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Most spectacular development of a storm you can remember?


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Posted
  • Location: Irlam
  • Location: Irlam

    30th June 1990, a Saturday early afternoon.

    I was visiting my aunt and as I was leaving I said to her you better bring in your washing in because I felt as if there was going to be a storm. The atmosphere felt heavy with electricity to me. It was warm, humid, sunshine. The sky didn't look threatening though. As I headed home, you could see the sky to the south get blacker and blacker rapidly and by the time I got back about 5 minutes later, you could hear thunder. Well the storm struck with hail, thunder, the works about 10 minutes later.

    After the storm had passed, my aunt phoned up saying "good call!"

    It was amazing how rapidly it formed because there was no indication it moving in, it rapidly developed just to the south of me.

    2nd July 2006, hot Sunday afternoon. Thunderstorms were a threat but the way it happened. It just felt as if the clouds suddenly exploded above and released their deluge. It was like someone turning a shower on full blast.

    9th August 1999. I remember this one well. I could see a shower approaching from the southwest but you could see through it so it wasn't heavy or prolonged at that moment then all of a sudden there was huge deluge out of nowhere with strong gusty winds then thunder and lightning started kicking off. It must have been a microburst.

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    Posted
  • Location: Newton Poppleford, Devon, UK
  • Weather Preferences: Thunderstorms, Snow, High Winds.
  • Location: Newton Poppleford, Devon, UK

    I wasn't up to witness this but the thunderstorm of 28/06/2012 was a blighter. There was torrential rain, thunder and frequent lightning and it developed within minutes of forming. To make it interesting, the storm came over Newton Poppleford at around 03:00 which is in the early morning. So, there was definitely no durinal heating to aid the thunderstorm development. In fact, the thunderstorm's highest rainfall rate is the all time records highest rainfall rate recorded at Newton Poppleford Weather of 147.6 mm/hr 03:27 28/06/2012.

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    Posted
  • Location: Sunderland
  • Weather Preferences: Hot Summer, Snowy winter and thunderstorms all year round!
  • Location: Sunderland

    I wasn't up to witness this but the thunderstorm of 28/06/2012 was a blighter. There was torrential rain, thunder and frequent lightning and it developed within minutes of forming. To make it interesting, the storm came over Newton Poppleford at around 03:00 which is in the early morning. So, there was definitely no durinal heating to aid the thunderstorm development. In fact, the thunderstorm's highest rainfall rate is the all time records highest rainfall rate recorded at Newton Poppleford Weather of 147.6 mm/hr 03:27 28/06/2012.

    Hi Will, that storm you had was an elevated storm caused by the destabilization of plume of very moist air....I remember Cakie said it was a beast, and a few hours later all hell broke loose in the Midlands from the same event with a monster elevated MCS which morphed into hi precip supercells spawning tornadoes and damaging hail over the east midlands.....It was one of those very rare situations where all the necessary parameters came together

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    Posted
  • Location: Warminster, Wiltshire
  • Location: Warminster, Wiltshire

    Good thread idea Mr Data!

     

    Two stand out for me, coincidentally both Fridays.

     

    1. The amazing day of 24th June 2005 when 9 overhead storms happened over Westbury between 05.00-13.00 my not seem a likely candidate as there was such widespread activity that day. However the last of those 9 storms came completely unexpectedly after the Cold Front had seemingly moved away and the sky had cleared up, but almost out of the blue there was an explosive nearby CG from what at face value was a small discrete CB that gave a fine finale to a staggering morning.

     

    2. The 9th May 2008 had an unstable thundery feeling Friday evening after a fine, warm day. A heavy storm developed rapidly just to the North of Westbury at around 19.30-20.00 and this system continually back-built giving stunning lightning towards Bath/Bristol that I watched outside my house with not a drop of rain all evening. As the storm slowly moved away/decayed there was strobe lightning in the anvil until around 23.00!

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    Definitely that crazy storm on May 9th 2011.

    We had several storms during the day and I was in the greenhouse watching a storm about 5 miles away to the NW rumbling and flashing away. It looked to be passing us as winds were from the SW so I was rather annoyed to be missing out.

    Not sure exactly what happened in the skies then - the storm seemed to rapidly expand, backbuild or secondary storm developed. Soon there was frequent overhead lightning and heavy rain which intensified with hail mixed in. Then winds picked up and the noise was deafening. The greenhouse was shaking and it was no longer fun and a bit scary TBH - so I decided to get the hell out of there and ran into the house, a good decision it turned out.

    As soon as I got into the house all HELL broke loose. The winds exploded - house was shaking, leaves, pots, twigs flying horizontal through the air. Bins, cast iron chairs and tables thrown 20m or so across the garden into a hedge. Rain and hail off the scale - visibility about 60-70m. The greenhouse was shattered with intact panes of glass later found at the end of the garden several feet up a hedge - they must have flew 20 feet without touching the ground! Could have decapitated someone. Winds might have been close to 100mph, worst I've ever seen despite frequent gales here in autumn and winter with 60-70mph gusts. My Nan in her 80s said she'd never seen anything like it so that says something.

    Things died down after about a minute of madness with the storm slowly drifting away to the E with continuing frequent thunder and lightning and heavy rain. I initially thought it was a tornado but now think a downburst/microburst with powerful straight-line winds. You wouldn't have seen a tornado with the visibility however so who knows...

    There was no sign of it as the storm to the NW was clearly going NE and there was nothing but broken cloud with some blue skies to the SW and overhead. Went from no sign of anything to chaos within 5 minutes. So that storm etiher exploded in size and scale and/or changed direction, crazy.

    Edited by Bobby
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    Posted
  • Location: Garforth, Leeds 86m asl
  • Weather Preferences: Heat, Snow, Thunder
  • Location: Garforth, Leeds 86m asl

    This is a video of the most spectacular storm cloud I've ever seen in the UK which was under a met office red warning. Filmed from Spalding in Lincolnshire looking east and you can see it exploding upwards when I zoom in. The end of the video shows the cloud about half an hour later. Saw some nice distant lightning when the sun went down, it was like storm watching over in Thailand!

    Edited by bazookabob
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    Posted
  • Location: Newton Poppleford, Devon, UK
  • Weather Preferences: Thunderstorms, Snow, High Winds.
  • Location: Newton Poppleford, Devon, UK

    Hi Will, that storm you had was an elevated storm caused by the destabilization of plume of very moist air....I remember Cakie said it was a beast, and a few hours later all hell broke loose in the Midlands from the same event with a monster elevated MCS which morphed into hi precip supercells spawning tornadoes and damaging hail over the east midlands.....It was one of those very rare situations where all the necessary parameters came together

    The rest of the UK certainly had one hell of a good time, I can't believe I slept through it.

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    Posted
  • Location: Newton Poppleford, Devon, UK
  • Weather Preferences: Thunderstorms, Snow, High Winds.
  • Location: Newton Poppleford, Devon, UK

    Definitely that crazy storm on May 9th 2011.We had several storms during the day and I was in the greenhouse watching a storm about 5 miles away to the NW rumbling and flashing away. It looked to be passing us as winds were from the SW so I was rather annoyed to be missing out.Not sure exactly what happened in the skies then - the storm seemed to rapidly expand, backbuild or secondary storm developed. Soon there was frequent overhead lightning and heavy rain which intensified with hail mixed in. Then winds picked up and the noise was deafening. The greenhouse was shaking and it was no longer fun and a bit scary TBH - so I decided to get the hell out of there and ran into the house, a good decision it turned out.As soon as I got into the house all HELL broke loose. The winds exploded - house was shaking, leaves, pots, twigs flying horizontal through the air. Bins, cast iron chairs and tables thrown 20m or so across the garden into a hedge. Rain and hail off the scale - visibility about 60-70m. The greenhouse was shattered with intact panes of glass later found at the end of the garden several feet up a hedge - they must have flew 20 feet without touching the ground! Could have decapitated someone. Winds might have been close to 100mph, worst I've ever seen despite frequent gales here in autumn and winter with 60-70mph gusts. My Nan in her 80s said she'd never seen anything like it so that says something.Things died down after about a minute of madness with the storm slowly drifting away to the E with continuing frequent thunder and lightning and heavy rain. I initially thought it was a tornado but now think a downburst/microburst with powerful straight-line winds. You wouldn't have seen a tornado with the visibility however so who knows...There was no sign of it as the storm to the NW was clearly going NE and there was nothing but broken cloud with some blue skies to the SW and overhead. Went from no sign of anything to chaos within 5 minutes. So that storm etiher exploded in size and scale and/or changed direction, crazy.

    Did any trees come down?

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    Posted
  • Location: Chapmanslade, Wiltshire + Charente, France
  • Location: Chapmanslade, Wiltshire + Charente, France
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    Posted
  • Location: Medway - 125m ASL
  • Weather Preferences: Hot summers, snowy winters and thunderstorms!
  • Location: Medway - 125m ASL

    Foreign wise:

     

    Croatia - August 2006

     

    More for the visuals than the storm itself. Our island had a vista out to Italy. It had rained heavily that morning, but then had been very hot throughout the day. As the day wore on you could see the clouds building and building. We ate dinner as the sun was beginning to set with a view out to sea and it was almost like watching a timelapse throughout dinner. The waiter said something along the lines of 'it's going to be a big one tonight'. By sunset there were huge anvils and you could see it was about to burst. We sat out on our balcony and was amazed at how the moonlight lit up the anvils and we started to hear rumbles in the distance and the wind picked up. Unfortunately it just skimmed us and really stormed on the mainland, but did get some of the torrential rain from the edge. Although we didn't get the storm to see it building up all day was quite something.

     

    In the UK:

     

    Holidaying in Cornwall - Around August 1995/96 sometime

     

    The night before Michael Fish (I think) had said the West Country would see some heavy thunderstorms the next day and I had been excited and looking forward to it all day. Spent a lovely day on the beach and towards the late afternoon it started to get very humid and you could see the clouds building. We joked about how we needed to get the BBQ done before the storm came and Dad said how it wouldn't be a proper BBQ without doing it under an umbrella. As the BBQ came to an end there had been a few heat spots of rain despite the cloud not really being anywhere near us. My Mum got out the camera and started snapping away at the anvils that were looming. I'll always vividly remember this bit because the storm looked like it had a giant arm either side coming to wrap around us.

     

    Within about 10 minutes of this, day turned into night (sunset was still about an hour away) and without any rain, the mightiest flash-bang sent us scarpering into the caravan and about 10 seconds later the wind became violent. We found it weird that there was strong wind and T&L yet no rain yet. Dad, quite sensibly, boiled up lots of water as Dad instinct told him we'd probably lose power (and we did until midday the next day). The wind died down a bit and then the rain came. To say it was like someone was pouring buckets of water of the caravan would be an understatement. The only rain I've ever seen like it since have been during monsoons abroad. At this point my sister (who is 8 years older than me!) was hiding under the covers whilst my parents, brother and I sat drinking tea watching it all out the window. It rained so hard, half of the awning collapsed and Dad and Brother had to go out and rescue it. I'll always remember this for being the only UK storm that had coloured lightening (from the hail, I presume?) It went on for a good few hours (I would later learn the front had stalled and pretty much held it over us) and reluctantly I went to bed and fell asleep to the storm. As dawn broke the storm was still rumbling away gently and actually built up again at about 7am for about half an hour and then moved on, but we continued to have thunder and lightening in the distance for a good while after. The fire brigade were at the park at this point because of serious flooding and some damage to buildings. Luckily we were on a site on a hill so no one got completely flooded out, but a few caravans had been hit and the families had slept in the site shop all night. Again Mum got out the camera and took pictures of the storm fading away which looked remarkably similar to a dying supercell. I distinctly remember the next day being incredibly still and very much the calm after the storm.

     

    I cannot explain why I have always found storms so exciting yet soothing at the same time and I remember my sister commenting on it and this has never changed.

    Edited by Lauren
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    Posted
  • Location: Bratislava (240m)
  • Location: Bratislava (240m)

    Probably 11th May 2008. Some time late in the afternoon a warm and sunny day suddenly gave way to a big thunderstorm. I got stranded in the pub as both the bowling green and the main road turned into lakes.

     

    My best birthday weatherwise.

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    Posted
  • Location: Ludwigshafen / Mannheim, Germany (98 m)
  • Location: Ludwigshafen / Mannheim, Germany (98 m)

    Moste awesome formations in my city:

     

    2.6.1999: Derecho swept through our town, 7 cm hail diameter, flash rate up to 160/min, 160 kph gusts and a tornado! Here is a reanalyis for that day http://www.wetterzentrale.de/cgi-bin/webbbs/wzconfig1.pl?read=25 (written in german, but contains alot of maps such as radar and synoptic). Shortly before it hit, it developed a multi-story-shelf within about 10 minutes!

     

    9.6.2010: Two supercells colliding right above me and developed into one big hp supercell! You were able to see the the clouds morph together, incredible formation! Hail up to 5 cm in diameter, flash rate of about 120/min, tornado event about few hundred meters east of my house!

    This is a stormchaser report on that monster, he was about 10 miles south of me: http://www.wzforum.de/forum2/read.php?8,1897160,1897160

     

    One day later another supercell striked us (Video recorded about 2 miles north of my location):

     

    26.8.2011: extreme flash rate, here's a video of that day recorded north of my location. Storm developed rapidely over platinate forest, it was that fast, that there was lightning even before the cell was captured by radar!

    Edited by Knoxgar
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    Posted
  • Location: Poole, Dorset
  • Location: Poole, Dorset

    June 5th 1983 http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/j.1477-8696.1983.tb04829.x/abstract - I remember hearing what we thought were tanks practising on the firing ranges in Dorset but turned out to be approaching thunder. Ended up with golf ball sized hailstones and a lot of smashed greenhouses!

     

    I also remember another one in summer 1982 where it went so dark it was like night during the day. Not seen anything like that since. Not even the 83 storm was that dark as far as I remember.

    Edited by big_treacle
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    • 2 weeks later...
    Posted
  • Location: Lincoln, Lincolnshire
  • Weather Preferences: Sunshine, convective precipitation, snow, thunderstorms, "episodic" months.
  • Location: Lincoln, Lincolnshire

    One contender has to be the one that I had on my PhD graduation day at the University of East Anglia, Norwich (18th July 2012).  One large cell that had produced a significant thunderstorm between Peterborough and Ely started to fizzle as it passed to the north of Norwich, but then another cell sprouted up rapidly on its southern flank and headed straight for Norwich, giving an impressive shelf cloud and a big deluge of rain accompanied by frequent lightning (flashes peaked at a rate of about one per 5-10 seconds).  I got some captures of the lightning on video camera.  It largely compensated for missing out on the big Tyne and Wear storms of 28 June 2012 due to having moved south to North Yorkshire just six days earlier.

     

    That said, I'm sure I've seen more spectacular development during my holidays to various parts of France, just can't recall any specific ones off the top of my head.

    Edited by Thundery wintry showers
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    Posted
  • Location: Powys Mid Wales borders.
  • Location: Powys Mid Wales borders.

    Here`s one I havn`t mentioned before I can remember a late afternoon of mammatus and continuous thunder coming in from the SE,must be back in the 90`s,very high level thunder covering from the top of the cloud anvil,incredible.

    Havn`t seen anything quite like that since,remember about 3 others with mammatus,but not as spectacular as those 2.

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    Posted
  • Location: Prague, Czech Republic and Staines, UK
  • Weather Preferences: Hot and sunny, thunderstorms, snow, fog, frost, squall lines
  • Location: Prague, Czech Republic and Staines, UK

    I've been lucky enough to witness many amazing storms both in the UK and abroad. The earliest severe storm memory comes from when I was about 6 or 7, year must have been '79 or '80. Remember watching the roiling clouds for much of the morning, there was a lot of rumbling thunder but no rain. Then around lunchtime the sky went black - so dark all the street lights came on. My little brother and I were in our bedroom playing and wondered what was going on, suddenly some crazy forked lightning started ripping through the sky. The thunder was incredible and we both started screaming and sobbing because we were so scared! My Mum came running in and pulled us away from the windows and we all huddled down, I remember her clearly watching the window looking so worried which scared me more lol. This constant strobing lightning and thunder went on for ages and the rain flooded all the local roads. I remember the storm being on the news too.

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