Severe Weather 2012 / 2013 Season

It took a long time before these storms finally started to fire, waiting pretty much until the end of the day. Activity started around Roma at the NW end of a surface trough which promised to deliver storms along a NW / SE line as it drifted eastwards during the evening.

I held some hopes for today but was a little gun-shy after a recent chase N of Gympie which produced naught but a cumulus humilis sunset. So again I sat tight until activity started on radar. At the first sign of the Roma cells, I was out the door like the storm-starved desperado I am.

Picking a target was tricky considering the trough would run from around Roma, kind of eastwards to around Dalby then down south of Toowoomba and Brisbane and into NE NSW. Toowoomba and Warwick seemed like equal chances. I started towards Toowoomba with the plan of heading S from there if necessary, continually tempted by the Warwick turn-offs when I saw the silhouette of some fresh but lightning-free towers to the distant SW of about Marburg.

Just before Gatton, these cells started to spark so I swung SW towards Allora. I'd never taken this road but it was gorgeous and flat, until I of course reached the Great Dividing Range, when I lost my views, and internet access, completely. It started raining with lightning nearby and I feared ending up behind the storms.

It turned out to be just one cell of several, so I let it go and, over the hideous mountains, found a great spot just NE of Clifton (which itself is just N of Allora).

Another cell was heading directly for me, this one with a lovely little shelf cloud.

       

One of its lowerings almost touched the ground:

                   

At this point I considered darting back NE to stay ahead of the storm, but the mountainous terrain and prospect of this storm turning into a rainy mess convinced me to stay put, enjoy the show and maybe follow the storms from behind, bettering my chances of avoiding the rain.

So I sat tight, enjoyed the howling wind and heavy rain for a bit, then proceeded onto Clifton where the rain died down enough for more photos.

 

There was more lightning near Dalby in a new line drifting E towards me, but rain prevented me from heading too far N to meet it. The lightning was obscured by rain so I focused on the retreating cell to the NE.

   

The southern end of the approaching line let out a few forks, which got me excited.

 

I considered heading S to be closer, but the activity was infrequent and died shortly after.

 

I was surprised to get home to Springwood in Brisbane to find not a drop of rain had fallen. It was shortly after midnight and I'd just beaten the line home. It started raining lightly with even a couple of bright flashes and booms of thunder, but it didn't last.


Full Brisbane 256km radar loop 4pm-10am

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