Watching this evening…

Update: 7:24 p.m.
The storms in eastern Iowa are going to stay away from our area. A few showers are still possible this evening, but the threat of severe weather appears to be pretty much nil. I wouldn’t be surprised if the flood watch is cancelled soon, as well. The storms well to our south have cut off Gulf moisture, so the cold front was not able to establish an organized line of thunderstorms.

Temperatures will quickly drop later tonight as the cold front sweeps through.

Update: 6:04 p.m.
Cells continue to develop in our northwest counties.
The storms in eastern Iowa have gone severe, with nickel-sized hail reported.

Update: 5:34 p.m.

The cluster of rain and thunderstorms in southeast Iowa is still holding its own. We’re also seeing a couple blips on the radar developing in western Carroll County over the past few minutes.

Eric describes it best… we have the ingredients in place, but we’re still not sure if the oven is going to be set to the right temperature.

Original Post:
We’re watching storms try to develop near the surface low in southeastern Iowa. With all the cloudcover/mist/fog today, we’ve found ourselves in a pretty stable airmass. However, there has been thinning of the clouds in eastern Iowa – even some clearing – allowing some energy to get going. This energy will need to sustain itself as the low moves northeast through the afternoon/evening hours. If it doesn’t, we’ll have too much shear for any storms to be able to survive. If it does… then storms will have the ability to rotate. It’s one of the variables we’re monitoring. In addition, if you’ve stepped outside and are south of the Illinois-Wisconsin border, you’ve felt a very distinct change in the air. Our temperature and dewpoint have both surged; as I write this, Rockford is 60 with a dewpoint of 56.

Tonight’s weather situation is looking like an all-or-nothing sort of scenario. Everything has to come into place just right if strong storms are going to develop. We’ll be giving you frequent updates…

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This post was written by qni_it on March 31, 2008

9 Comments so far

  1. Corey March 31, 2008 11:06 PM

    Here in Dubuque, Iowa the temperature has reached 57 degrees. There was a Severe Thunderstorm Warning issued for Linn, Johnson, Benton, and Iowa Counties, or the counties just near and to the southwest of Cedar Rapids. Storms have begun to blossom in the area, and I think the “fuel” is being ignited.

  2. Eric Sorensen March 31, 2008 11:59 PM

    Front is approaching DBQ. Probably will be through by 8:30. You’ll know because of a sharp temp drop. A few storms are sprouting up west of Freeport (aside from the big storm NW of DBQ). We’ll have to see if these sprouts can take root in the low-level moisture. -ERIC

  3. Kate April 1, 2008 12:38 AM

    Thanks for keeping us updated! I have a house in Afton, WI that already flooded once this year, so I am watching this storm carefully. You guys are the best.

  4. Corey April 1, 2008 3:09 AM

    Little if any precipitation in Dubuque since this afternoon. We recieved betweeen one-half and three-fourths of an inch this morning, especially in the 9AM time frame.

    Those storms that were down by Cedar Rapids fizzled out, and came by with a sprinkle and a faint clap of thunder. Although, the NWS DVN did issue a Special Weather Statement around 8PM that a funnel cloud was spotted in the northeastern part of Linn County (Cedar Rapids.) Dubuque, Delaware, Jackson, and Jones Counties were put under the statement.

    It was a very un-impressive severe weather event, and the rain.. wasn’t as severe as I thought it would be. I have a feeling sometime this month, we’ll get a big one!

  5. Jim April 1, 2008 3:25 AM

    so it looks like it hit 60 degrees today! There goes A. Painter’s theory of no sixties this March. 🙁 go figure on the last day of the month, too… aha

  6. Justin Gehrts April 1, 2008 3:34 AM

    We figured today was one of those “if things can push JUST enough”… lots of what-ifs were involved.

    I *am* glad we managed to reach 60, though. 🙂

  7. tony April 1, 2008 3:40 AM

    Actually it looks like the heavy rain and squall line did happen, just much further downstate than was thought. We just had too many clouds and fog to get anything going up here. But it is only late march-early april, I have a feeling we may not get so lucky the next time something like this develops.

  8. Justin April 1, 2008 4:26 AM

    Today got me so excited for summer. I actually HEARD thunder. I almost forgot what it was.

  9. Adam Painter April 1, 2008 4:35 PM

    Jim, it was pretty funny that Mother Nature waited until the last 8 hours of the entire month to get us up to 60 degrees. My prediction made back on the 18th of March was off by 1/3 of a day. Now if we can string together a couple of days in the 60s, I would really be excited!

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