Friday, July 17, 2009

Jim Toth Wrote

Yesterday afternoon, just after 4 PM (let's say 2310Z), I was around the Tucson mall, driving east. Glancing at the Catalinas and the Rincons, it occurred to me that the atmosphere looked different from previous afternoons, like it was primed for late action (at that moment I was thinking "well, possibly 2 or 3 AM"). It's not that I was expecting a trigger, or had given much thought to the likelihood. I think what struck me was that there were a few small thin towers sitting in the haze over the foothills, out away from the mountains. So I wasn't entirely surprised to hear the first rumblings around 9 PM. Later, looking at the NWS discussion, I was trying to reconcile the reported drier sounding with what my eyes had told me at about the same time.
This afternoon the air is particularly hazy and/or smokey - there appears to be a fire burning on the east flanks of the Catalinas - I can see a smoke plume from the backyard. Wouldn't be surprising given the numerous lightning strikes last evening. Bob

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