Awesome evening skies leave Catalinans with but a trace of rain, but over there by Picture Rocks, they got over an inch!

“Too many pictures, for one site…”, a continuing theme here1, to paraphrase “? and the Mysterians1“.

Two stations near Picture Rocks reported 1.25 and 1.35 inches, respectively, so some major rain fell fairly close to us.   You can see the amount arounds around the State or here  at the Banner U of AZ rainlog,org site.

Below your October 8th, 2016 cloud day, a Saturday in which the author’s former company fubball team, the Washington Huskies, spanked the Nike University of Oregon Duck, 70-21, ending years of futility against the billionaire’s sports teams.  Too bad Washington multi-billionaire Gates is more interested in saving the world  instead of helping the Huskies get better in sports like Phil Knight does with The Duck there in Duckville, OR….

Oh, well,  off task there for a minute.  I’m back now!

7:06 AM. Pretty Cirrus uncinus with a few Altocumulus over on the left.
7:06 AM. Pretty Cirrus uncinus  (tufted ice clouds with the larger ice crystals falling out where the wind is not as strong as where the head is)  with a few Altocumulus over on the left.
8:43 AM. The really sharp-eyed cloud maven junior person would have noticed these little icy trails in a sliver of Altocumulus or Cirrocumulus. These supercooled clouds were converted to ice along the path of the aircraft. The brighter one is the most recent one and is so white due to the extremely high concentrations of tiny (order of 10s of microns) germ-like ice crystals. Concentrations would be something like 10s of thousand per liter. Once formed, they compete for the available moisture, some evaporating, some able to grow larger and fall out just as ice crystals do in Cirrus clouds. The less white trail is older and is one where the crystals are spreading out and also evaporating so the concentrations are much less. Presently it is believe that the air going over the wing of a jet drops the temperature to below -39° C where crystals form spontaneously and can survive and grow within a supercooled water cloud egad this is getting to be a long caption.

Now, here where the excitement begins.  Recall Mike L. and Bobby Maddox, both super experts concerning convection, called for severe storms and large hail today due to what the models were showing in the vertical wind profile and the amount of moisture available.  Below, we start yesterday chapter of convection, and see where it leads.

3:47 PM. Beginning to think Mike L and Bobby M are going to be wrong. Cumulus in the heat of the day have only reached moderate, “congestus” sizes around here, though Cumulonimbus cloud tops can be seen off in the distance.
2:50 PM. Another pretty sky scene with an ineffectual Cumulus congestus there north of Saddlebrooke. Looks like is has a little ice ejecta on the far right, middle. But see how any rain would fall out not within the main cloud body but out the side away from the base. More evaporating of any drops would occur. This is happening due to the moderate southwesterly winds higher up, with slower winds from the south below. Thinking about taking a nap….
2:51 PM. On second thought, maybe I should see how the septic repair is going…. Looks OK. Wonder how many thousands it will be?
2:58 PM. Even though it looks like Mike and Bob are still going to be wrong, at least someone’s getting some good TSTMS (weather text for “thunderstorms” in case you do that, but don’t do it whilst you’re driving, a public message from your CMP. Some cloud science: On the right is a turret that’s climbed up beyond the level of “glaciation” but still contains tons of water. Center left, is a complex of turrets a little behind that one that are taller, and in those tops you woud find little or no water, just ice crystals. Can you see the difference in texture between the rising turret full of water (though graupel, hail, and small ice crystals are likely inside it)
3:58 PM. Septic crew was asking, “where’s the hail you said would happen today?” I corrected them by saying that Mike and Bobby told me that, I didn’t personally make that forecast. I told them, hang on, things are starting to happen. And, about this time, the NWS started to issue severe TSTM alerts for Cochise County due HAIL and high winds! Still, it didn’t yet look that great for us here in Catalina, Oro Valley area. The Cbs shown here are that “tough.”
4:27 PM. Still kind of bored, think I’ll take picture of an interesting shadow pattern.
4:34 PM. Gads, looks awful out there. Only the anvil is left of a former thunderstorm toward Twin Peaks as the wind shear aloft rips from it from its root base. Not too bad there on the left, though. Still looks like a dud day for us in Catalina anyway at this moment.
4:55 PM. Modest Cumulonimbus forms in the lee of the Charouleaiu Gap. Notice here that looking to the NE you can only see the rising turret part of this Cumulonimbus. The anvil is trailing downwind away from you, some of that anvil can be seen at the far right,just above the ridge. But you can clearly see some precip is falling out of this, Code 1 (transparent shaft) likely because as we saw earlier, the precip is not falling through the whole depth of the cloud but is falling from a higher portion of the cloud that has been blown off toward the NE before the precip got going in it.
5:01 PM. Yikes, when did this happen? Must have been between commercials during football viewing.  You can only go outsie during commercials so you miss some things.  Bobby and Mike are going to be correct for our own backyard! Hope we get something, and it appears to be upwind of Catalina!
5:06 PM. Just because it was pretty. Cumulus congestus tops, brilliantly white (that higher one in the back).
5:31 PM. More commercials allow a quick trip down the road to get this. Of concern, the shafting is shifting rightward and away from us. What’s upwind is now the Code 1 transparent rain. BUT, the base in the middle of the photo, and close by, looks great! Perhaps some stupefying dump will emerge from that and grow more good base material exactly upwind of us!
5:58 PM. Another discouraging day of promise gone unfulfilled here in Catalina/Sutherland Heights. Feelling sad, though I would take a funny picture of my shadow whilst walking the dogs at half time, makes me look bigger than I really am. made me smile amid the dismal sprinkle that started to fall, giving us yet another “trace” of rain day.
6:06 PM. There goes our complex of rain, thunder and lightning off into the distance. Still, the scene was great.
6:06 PM. There goes our complex of rain, thunder and lightning off into the distance. Still, the scene was great.
6:08 PM. Day ended with some dramatic, colorful scenes, something said here alot, but true.


The End.


1If you don’t believe ? said something like that, go  here

By Art Rangno

Retiree from a group specializing in airborne measurements of clouds and aerosols at the University of Washington (Cloud and Aerosol Research Group). The projects in which I participated were in many countries; from the Arctic to Brazil, from the Marshall Islands to South Africa.