*UPDATED* Strong Thunderstorms Today

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Summary | Forecast | Monitoring & Reporting | Safety

Thunderstorms are expected across much of the area today, with potentially strong thunderstorms mainly across the higher elevations of the west, including the Tetons, Yellowstone National Park, and Jackson Hole. The primary threats with these storms will be potentially damaging wind gusts over 60 MPH, and hail up to the size of quarters; also, frequent lightning outside of the main rain core over very dry vegetation sparking new wildfires is also a concern...mainly east of the Divide. 

 

Prepare NOW for potentially damaging winds. The atmosphere is ripe for producing strong wind gusts from storms that we can not always see on radar, therefore, some of these damaging winds could come with little to no warning. As the mid levels of the atmosphere cool this afternoon, this will create an environment more condicive to hail growth. If you live west of the Divide,  or above 7000ft elevation, take steps NOW to protect your property from hail damage.

A series of disturbances moving across the Great Basin into the northern Plains will provide the necessary lift for thunderstorms today. There will also be an upper level jet streak arriving this afternoon, providing some dynamic support and the spin necessary to support hail growth. 

 

Saturay Morning Water Vapor Satellite Loop

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This morning's satellite loop with lightning detections overlaid, shows today's disturbance that will be responsible for the thunderstorms early this afternoon moving into northern Utah and into Idaho.

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A jet streak (blue and green shaded area) moving into the region will enhance thunderstorm strength this afternoon and may keep storms going into the evening hours.

 

PRIMARY THREATS TODAY

  • Damaging Wind Gusts (> 60 MPH)
  • Frequent Dangerous Lightning
  • New Wildfires
  • Hail (<= 1" in Diameter) (Especially in the West)
  • Brief, Heavy Downpours
  •   

    The Storm Prediction General Thunderstorm Areas

    CLICK IMAGE TO ENLARGE

    Latest SPC Discussion:
    ...NRN GRT BASIN NE TO NRN PLNS THIS AFTN INTO TNGT...
    LOW AMPLITUDE DISTURBANCES ACCELERATING NEWD AHEAD OF BC/AB UPR
    TROUGH EXPECTED TO FOSTER SCTD SMALL CLUSTERS OF STRONG TO POSSIBLY
    LOCALLY SVR STORMS LATER THIS AFTN INTO TNGT FROM UT/ERN ID E/NE
    INTO MUCH OF WY AND CNTRL/ERN MT. THE MAIN THREAT WITH THIS ACTIVITY
    SHOULD BE DMGG WIND GIVEN 30 KT LWR TROPOSPHERIC MEAN FLOW AND STEEP
    LOW LVL LAPSE RATES. SOME POTENTIAL ALSO WILL EXIST FOR A
    LOOSELY-ORGANIZED CLUSTER OF FORWARD-PROPAGATING STORMS TO EVOLVE
    NEAR LEE TROUGH OVER ERN MT AND/OR NE WY TOWARD EVE. SUCH A SYSTEM...
    WERE IT TO DEVELOP...COULD MOVE NE INTO WRN AND NRN ND POSING A RISK
    FOR DMGG WIND GIVEN VERY WARM/DEEP MIXED ENVIRONMENT...NOCTURNALLY/
    DYNAMICALLY STRENGTHENING LLJ...AND AT LEAST THE GLANCING INFLUENCE
    OF FORCING FOR ASCENT ASSOCIATED WITH BC/AB/MB UPR TROUGH. LOW SVR
    PROBABILITIES HAVE BEEN EXTENDED INTO ND FOR THIS POSSIBLE SCENARIO.
    Previous Discussion:
    ...NRN GREAT BASIN...
    A SERIES OF RELATIVELY FAST-MOVING SHORTWAVE TROUGHS WILL SPREAD    
    NEWD FROM THE GREAT BASIN TO THE NRN PLAINS THROUGH TONIGHT. ONE OF
    THESE FEATURES WAS TRACKING ACROSS NRN UT THIS MORNING ACCOMPANIED
    BY RELATIVELY WIDESPREAD CONVECTION (See Animation Above). WHILE
    SOME CONVECTIVE CLOUD COVER AND GENERALLY DRY BOUNDARY LAYER AWAY
    FROM THE CONVECTION WILL LIMIT DESTABILIZATION...SOME LOCATIONS WILL
    EXPERIENCE INSOLATION SUFFICIENT TO BOOST MLCAPE INTO THE 500-1000
    J/KG RANGE. DYNAMIC LIFT...TERRAIN INFLUENCES...AND RELATIVELY FAST
    MID LEVEL SWLY FLOW ON THE ORDER OF 40KT...SHOULD SUPPORT CLUSTERS
    OF MORE ORGANIZED/PERSISTENT STORMS POSING BOTH HAIL AND WIND HAZARDS
    THROUGH THE AFTERNOON. THE FOCUS FOR MORE SUBSTANTIAL SEVERE STORM
    COVERAGE CURRENTLY REMAINS MASKED BY EARLY DAY STORMS AND
    ILL-DEFINED SFC FEATURES. HOWEVER...SOME OF THIS REGION MAY REQUIRE
    GREATER SEVERE WEATHER PROBABILITIES IN LATER OUTLOOKS IF STORM
    CHARACTER AND EVOLUTION BECOME CLEARER.

     

    Main Thunderstorm Hazards

     

    CLICK IMAGE TO ENLARGE

    The shaded portion of this image highlights the areas where the Storm Prediction Center believes there could be strong to damaging wind gusts associated with the stronger storms that form today and tonight.

     CLICK IMAGE TO ENLARGE

    The shaded portion of this image highlights the areas where the Storm Prediction Center believes there could be severe hail (>or= 1" in diameter) associated with the stronger storms that form today and tonight.

     

     

    If you live in the areas highlighted above, prepare now for potentially strong thunderstorms today. For more information on the weather pattern this weekend, please check out our Multimedia Weather Briefing Video. Also, please be sure to monitor your NOAA Weather Radio, local Television Station, or our Website for the latest Severe Weather Warnings and Watches.

     

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