First Shelf Cloud of the Year

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Summary: On January 4th, 2023 the SPC Issued Day 1 Slight Risk for the Coastal Southeast for a wind driven QCLS line with above average temperatures for January in the mid 70s allowing for more arching to occur throughout the line due to moderate buoyancy which imposed all threats to be possible. Unfortunately the KLTX radar was down due to maintenance that was being done prior to the event. However, the KMHX radar came for the save once the storm made it’s final approach. Winds were gusting to around 58mph after the shelf passed over which nearly took my drone away.

Radar Imagery when drone was Launched

Once drone was airborne, the shelf was evident as it ominously creeped closer and closer. As the storm crawled closer, the LLJ was ripping at around 50kts which produced a clear challenge for the drone. Once it was in the whales mouth however, it was pretty much over as winds at the surface started to increase. After fighting with the drone for 3 minutes trying to prevent it from landing in the river, it made it out successfully.

Time Lapse of Shelf’s Approach

Winds increasing as Drone gets battered with heavy winds. Along with beautiful whales mouth which you can see the ripping LLJ with.

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