Michael Thompson's Australian Storm Chase Diary

5th December 2004 - Non Severe storm, Southern Highlands, NSW

Pulse type cell near Bundanoon
Weak storm near Bungonia

It had been an absolutely dreadful November, with few storms and a complete lack of moisture whenever a weak trough developed. I had taken five weeks annual leave and the first three had slipped past stormless. I was desperate !

The storm drought was broken on the 5th December when at last humid onshore winds were set to penetrate inland, but more important be deeper than previous surface winds. In many ways today was a demonstration of how critical moisture is. On at least two occasions in November we had days with higher Lift Index and CAPE, but no storms due to poor moisture depth - today's figures would keep most chasers firmly tucked in bed - Lift Index bearly negative at -1C to -2C and CAPE less than 500. However there was moisture and a SE front working up the coast.

I chased with Steve and we scored a reasonably lightning active cell near Bundanoon, and another weak storm near Bungonia.

Near Bundanoon


Map below courtesy of Bureau of Meteorology