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Monday, June 30, 2008

Lightning Photos in Downtown KC, Surprise Structure/Funnel

Above, are a couple of more pictures from last weekend on Clinton Lake.

Derek and I headed out on Friday night to downtown KC when we saw a developing MCS moving its way and ended up following it till dawn which yielded some amazing structure and a high-based funnel on an updraft occlusion at ~ 6:30 a.m! It was one of those storms where there was constant lightning, and not a second went by you couldn't see CC's or CG's...but, it was very difficult to photograph them unless you got into the rain. Derek uses my old XT with the Sigma 10-20 and I've been showing him how to use it and he really enjoys getting lightning shots. Some pictures are below...

Derek shot this one below of the Sprint Center in downtown Kansas city on top of the parking garage across from the new huge McFadden's bar in the new power and light district...which is a very hoppin' place the three nights we've been by there.

The structure of this supercell below (yes, it was supercell, with a persistent mesocyclone) was incredible and surprising. It formed very near Fort Scott, Kansas from to the northwest from the outflow of the southward pushing MCS at around 4:30 a.m.

It had a huge vault and as we moved east of Pittsburgh Kansas with it, would develop a clear slot and eventually it's occluding updraft would produce a small rope funnel. Too bad it wasn't surface based or I'm sure it would have produced.

Pictures of some lightning shots (below) at dawn looking into its core...probably my best one of the year at 17 mm (very close):

Here's the back side of the updraft, there wasn't any rotation visible...

About 10 minutes later if that:

Close up

Wide angle (notice the occlusion and the new updraft forming to the right)

Gave up on it after that, as energy drinks weren't keeping us up any longer and we watched it strengthen, showing some good rotation on radar...but it was never severe nor tornado-warned.

The night before, Darin, his girlfriend Lexi, my girlfriend Devin and I sat out at Clinton Lake on the dam and watched an LP storm, that displayed supercell characteristics, for a couple of hours. Of course I didn't bring my camera and Darin's battery was only good for a few shots before his battery died. Incredible lightning, with no rain at all. Very symmetrical CG's, with the leaders branching out into a perfect "family tree" that would do a complete 360 around the sky before ending it perfectly with a powerful CG. It did this at least ten times and freaked out others watching on the dam to take off and leave! I've never seen such a display, with lightning strikes that would have made for perfect photographs. Oh well.

I have tons of more pictures to upload as well as video to edit.

1 comment:

Anita said...

Fabulous... Those Clinton Lake photos are almost too gorgeous to believe!
I am a country girl through and through, but I love Kansas City - and your shots are always great
Love that very last "wide angle" shot...

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