Ottertail County Minnesota
A poorly forced cold front was crossing the eastern Dakotas with a pre-frontal trough.
Despite ample instability, poor lift and even worse shear was the recipe for bad storms.
I like it when the edge of the cap lines up with my mom's place in Fergus Falls. The first set up storms that went
up were rooted above the cap though and despite rocketing up to over 40k feet, they are unable to sustain very
long with the poor shear in place. However, I fiind this osprey nest off highway 108 near Round Lake.
It was really evident the trough would be the better play but I knew the bulk shear would slowly increase as the cold
front started to catch up. New cells continued to fire just southwest of Fergus. After dumping the first set of cells south
of Detroit Lakes, I did a little side trip through Friberg township to drive the side roads I used to when I lived in that area.
The third cell is the charm. After swinging back by my mom's to pick up Cailyn, we headed to the west side of town off
highway 210 to watch a new storm develop. This storm was obviously surface based but we needed the increasing bulk
shear to help us out and keep everything discreet for a little bit.
This updraft base suddenly switched from being totally outflow to inflow as we watched. The problem was the inflow
was south/southwest plus another cell was trying to go up to the southwest with the precip getting pulled into the updraft.
Surprisingly the based started to develop and isolated lowering as Cailyn and I watched.
Cailyn keeps a close eye on the base as it exhibited some very weak rotation with even a bit of a curl.
Given how marginal the severe parameters were (even though there was a
severe box up), I was happy we at least got a storm with a little structure to it.
Dueling action areas. About the time our cell started to move off the northeast, the next cell to the north did the same
thing. However, about this time the cold front caught up and severely undercut the updrafts lining everything out.
The storms quickly lined out near of Fergus Falls as we zig zagged our was east and north to Perham, MN where we
broke off the storm and headed for home with the cluster of storms never quite making it to severe levels.