Ka-blam! 1.07 inches, most of it in half an hour.

The late afternoon yesterday was like a Carpenter’s song, i.e., “easy listening” interrupted by Metallica, Megadeath, Slayer, Black Flag, Helloween, The English Dogs (“She Kicked Me in the Head and Left Me for Dead”), etc.

A day filled with moderately promising Cumulus congestus and brief area Cumulonimbus clouds, was suddenly overrun by a black steam roller with a watering tank behind it, and also having a  big fan, to wind up a semi-ludicrous metaphor, coming down out of the northeast bringing an early nightfall, blinding rains, and winds of 60-70 mph.  It was an astonishing change, and if you weren’t watching, but rather watching TEEVEE:  “Ka-blam! What the Hell?” (More on TEEVEE later; see last caption.)

Some rain totals, ones up to 2.64 inches (!) can be found here in the listing of Pima County ALERT gages. More results will be available during the morning from the U of AZ network here, and from the CoCoRahs network.  BTW, if you haven’t joined up, it would be good if you joined up with both of these latter “rain gangs.”

Of course, neurotic-compulsive cloud-maven person was watching for you.  I only wish I had a huge microphone yesterday evening so that I could have alerted the people of Catalina, “CDP”, to its impending weather doom.

Non-weather side note:  “Catalina: its not a town”, but rather, a “Census Designated Place” (CDP) where people are clustered, according to the Census Feds.  Namely, we’re Catalina, CDP, Arizona, 85739.  Its quite amazing the kinds of things you might read here, and its usually right after I find them out myself.


Enough collateral information.

The day, had a tranquil but portentful beginning filled with potentiation, with those low, warm cloud bases.  However, with the rising temperatures, ones into the mid-90s, so, too, did cloud bases rise.   This is normal.  As the daytime relative humidity falls, the cloud bases form at higher and higher levels.  I hope you didn’t get upset seeing that the afternoon bases were above the top of Ms. Lemmon.  Still, those higher, cooler bases did mean that the rain had farther to fall through dry air, not as good as having them down on the Sam Ridge line.

10:23 AM. Turrets begin shooting upward from bases topping Samaniego Ridge. This is good.
1:37 PM. Weak Cumulonimbus (Cb) finally forms in the area. Getting a little concerned at the lack of “progress”, and much higher bases now.
1:56 PM. Another weak Cb forms over the Tortolita Mountains.









3:43 PM. Another weak Cb forms this side of the Tortolita Mountains. That promising dark base above Catalina unleashed a sprinkle! (Sarcastically spoken).
3:18 PM. Finally, something close! Looks promising, but fizzled out.
4:14 PM. Not looking good. The Catalinas are back to producing shoots, not Cbs.










5:25 PM. Then “The Man” showed up, a gigantic Cb, one like the model had been suggesting would occur in the prior evening’s run.
6:28 PM. The “black steamroller” appears, about to blow over lawn furniture everywhere.
6:56 PM. Rolling into Sutherland Heights above Catalina, CDP, this 30-minute “incher”. I wonder who was watching TEEVEE, perhaps planning a TEEVEE party tonight, and not watching?










For a great movie of yesterday’s clouds from the U of AZ, go here.


An as yet inexplicable odditity to yesterday’s stupendous storm.  The lack of cloud to ground strokes; I didn’t see ONE, and I was looking.  Second, the frequency of lightning was as high as it gets.  In the dusky light, a new flash within the Cb in less than ONE second at the peak.  Its was remarkable.   That same kind of activity could be seen last night as the storms receded from us with almost continuous in cloud lightning, but no strokes to the ground (at least during the time I watched.


Still humid, still unstable aloft.  Mods say another active day, so watch it (not teevee)!