Thompson's Australian Storm Chase Diary
18th November 2007, Severe Flash Flooding,
photos (except video
stills ) clickable for larger size
Looking south from Goulburn
The 16th November 2007 held a lot of promise. CAPE of near 3000, and if
the models were correct adequate moisture.
I arrived at the McDonalds carpark in Goulburn just after noon. Here I
met with several other chasers. Those models had everyone all geared
up, but the sight southwards was sobering. High based cumulus struggled
in an environment that was moisture starved. We waited and
waited - did I tell you that the MacDonalds carpark at Goulburn has a
lovely view south, But the view comes with a price, getting sunburnt as
there is no shelter.
There was glaciating cumulus about 150 kilometres south, while that was
largely unreachable I still gambled that better moisture and outflow
would creep northwards - therefore I headed southwards. Just northwards
of Tarago I saw a very distant CG, so I knew I was probably not
afterall looking to a bust.
South of Tarago I pulled over on the Braidwood road and captured some
nice CG's on video, At this stage the storms were still high based.
A video of the lightning and flash flooding is below. If you
the video click here.
After some nice lightning I headed back northwards. What had been
struggling cumulus earlier was now developing rapidly, still high based
at this stage, but some nasty looking rain/hail shafts had developed on
the larger cells. Just north of Tarago I encountered some flash
flooding and torrential rain and small hail. I was was
quite content by the days chasing at this stage, afterall it
had looked like a bust only 90 minutes earlier. I started to call it
day, but when I emerged from the rain I looked SW and saw a lovely cell
with much more lowered bases and structure that had me turning the car
around in record speed.
I headed south again, then as I noticed that the storm was tracking NW
I headed NW from Tarago on the Collector road. Things from here got
really interesting - torrential train, drifts of hail and frequent
lightning. At one stage the road had become a river. I was thankful
that I had a large 4WD.
I finally broke free of the mess not far SW of Goulburn and spent a few
minutes getting lightning pictures.