A Stormy Start to Chrismas Eve on the Path Least Traveled…..

Dear Diary,

Not a normal blog here but a weather update for Wednesday the 23rd… a downside to having spring weather in December… 😀

The weather story;

severe tstms2

Discussion from ILX Lincoln, Illinois;

A potentially volatile day is unfolding on Wednesday as deepening
low pressure tracks from near Kansas City early in the day to Lake
Superior by evening. Strong southerly winds gusting to between 30
and 40 mph ahead of the approaching system will bring an
unseasonably warm and humid airmass into Illinois, with afternoon
high temperatures climbing to near record levels in the middle 60s
and surface dewpoints reaching the middle to upper 50s. Models
continue to show strong instability developing for this time of
year, with NAM SBCAPES of 500-1000J/kg and lifted index values of -2
to -4C. At the same time, 0-6km bulk shear will increase to between
70 and 80kt along/south of the I-70 corridor. Latest Day 2
convective outlook from SPC now places all areas east of the
Illinois River under a Slight Risk for severe. Based on current
projections and model forecast parameters, it appears the primary
severe weather threats will be damaging wind gusts and large hail,
although an isolated tornado will also be possible given the
increasing shear values. The main time frame for severe will be
during the afternoon east of the Illinois River, shifting to
along/east of the I-57 corridor by early evening. Cold front will
sweep through the region by around midnight, with rain chances
ending overnight.

From Matt Barnes, ILX, Lincoln, Illinois;

SWOP: Severe Weather Possible on Wednesday, December 23rd

The Storm Prediction Center (SPC) has indicated that a SLIGHT RISK for severe weather exists everywhere east of the Illinois River on Wednesday, December 23rd.  Please monitor future updates to the convective outlooks here: http://www.spc.noaa.gov/products/outlook/

An unseasonably warm and moist airmass will stream northward into Illinois ahead of an approaching storm system on Wednesday, with afternoon high temperatures reaching the middle 60s and surface dewpoints climbing well into the 50s.  This will produce unusually strong instability for this time of year, with resulting Convective Available Potential Energy (CAPE) values ranging from 500-1000J/kg.  In addition, low-level wind shear will increase markedly, particularly along/south of I-70.  As low pressure tracks from near Kansas City Wednesday morning to Lake Superior by evening, it will pull a cold front into central Illinois during the afternoon and evening.  Several lines of thunderstorms will likely develop ahead/along the front, with the main severe weather threats being damaging wind gusts and large hail.  An isolated tornado will also be possible, especially across southeast Illinois. 

DATE: Wednesday, December 23rd

TIME: 2 PM to 8 PM

LOCATION: Everywhere east of the Illinois River

THREATS: Damaging wind gusts in excess of 60 mph, large hail around quarter-sized, isolated tornadoes

SWOP ACTION: Please relay any reports of wind damage or hail via the online form as quickly as possible.  Thanks in advance for your help!

Matt Barnes
SWOP Program Leader    

Will let Yanni do the honors today, has a song for the occasion… 😀

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