A new storm summary issued by NWS

It is supposed to be in the low 60’s, sun shining and an occasional shower, it is spring anyway! This is the time when we get the heavy wet snow and moisture.

The National Weather Service has prepared a storm summary that is interesting reading regarding high winds, snowfall, etc.

Stay warm!

Fred

PUBLIC INFORMATION STATEMENT
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE GREAT FALLS MT
117 PM MDT WED MAY 5 2010

...STORM SUMMARY 3-4 MAY 2010...

ON THE HEELS OF A LATE APRIL WINTER STORM THAT DROPPED UP TO FOUR 
FEET OF SNOW OVER THE MOUNTAINS OF CENTRAL MONTANA...ANOTHER 
POWERFUL STORM MOVED THROUGH THE AREA 3-4 MAY 2010. SNOW ACCOMPANIED 
SOME OF THE STRONGEST WIND GUSTS /OUTSIDE OF THUNDERSTORMS/ OF 
RECORD IN THE AREA...CREATING BLIZZARD CONDITIONS FOR MUCH OF THE 
DAY ON 4 MAY FOR PORTIONS OF NORTH CENTRAL MONTANA. SOME AREAS OF 
THE BEARS PAW MOUNTAINS RECEIVED OVER 1.5 FEET OF SNOW. WIND GUSTS 
OVER 70 MPH WERE SCATTERED ACROSS BLAINE AND EASTERN FERGUS 
COUNTIES...THEN CONTINUED TO THE EASTERN MONTANA BORDER. THE WINDS 
STARTED ON THE 3RD AS A STRONG COLD FRONT MOVED ACROSS THE AREA. 
GUSTS TO 110 MPH WERE REPORTED AT LOGAN PASS...WITH LOWER GUST 
SPEEDS EAST OF THE DIVIDE. A GUST TO 69 MPH WAS REPORTED AT BOZEMAN 
AIRPORT AND 64 MPH IN SOUTHERN TOOLE AND LIBERTY COUNTIES. DURING 
THE GUSTY WINDS...A FIRE IN MADISON COUNTY BURNED OVER 200 TONS OF 
HAY.

THE STORM WAS A TWO-PHASED STORM IN WHICH A STRONG COLD FRONT PUSHED 
ACROSS THE STATE ON 3 MAY. STRONG WIND GUSTS TO 64 MPH WERE REPORTED 
NEAR GALATA AND LEDGER IN SOUTHERN TOOLE COUNTY...AND GUSTS TO 69 
MPH WERE OBSERVED NEAR BELGRADE AS THE FRONT PUSHED THROUGH ON THE 
EVENING OF 3 MAY.

ISOLATED THUNDERSTORMS ACCOMPANIED THE COLD FRONT...AS DID BLOWING 
DUST. SOME POWER OUTAGES OCCURRED AS POWER LINES SNAPPED IN THE 
STRONG WINDS. BRANCHES SNAPPED OFF TREES AND TREES WERE BLOWN OVER 
IN THE STRONG WINDS. STRONG JET-LEVEL WINDS ACCOMPANIED THE 
FRONT...WITH SPEEDS NEAR 150 KNOTS. THE SURFACE COLD FRONT SWEPT 
ACROSS THE STATE...BUT THE SURFACE LOW PRESSURE AREA SLOWED AND 
INTENSIFIED OVER SOUTHERN SASKATCHEWAN THROUGH 4 MAY. BY THE MORNING 
OF 4 MAY...WINDS OF 50 KNOTS OR GREATER HAD DEVELOPED THROUGH A 
LAYER FROM 6000 TO 9000 FEET ABOVE SEA LEVEL IN NORTH CENTRAL 
MONTANA. 

WHILE STRONG WINDS WERE BLOWING...SNOW WAS ALSO FALLING ABOVE 3500 
FEET IN NORTH CENTRAL MONTANA. OVER 20 INCHES OF SNOW FELL IN THE 
BEARS PAWS. REPORTS OF POWER OUTAGES AND DRIFTS TO SIX FEET WERE 
RECEIVED. 

WINDS TO 79 MPH OCCURRED NEAR ROY. HAVRE SET AN ALL-TIME DAILY HIGH 
WIND SPEED AVERAGE ON 4 MAY. THE AVERAGE WIND SPEED WAS 33 
MPH...WHICH EXCEEDED THE RECORD OF 32.5 MPH SET ON 13 FEBRUARY 1965. 
A GUST TO 64 MPH AT HAVRE SET A NEW MAY RECORD GUST. THE OLD RECORD 
GUST WAS 61 MPH IN 2001. AT LEWISTOWN...A NEW MAY HIGHEST DAILY WIND 
AVERAGE WAS ALSO ESTABLISHED. THE AVERAGE SPEED WAS 28 MPH...WHICH 
EXCEEDED THE RECORD OF 27.6 MPH SET IN 1964. THE PEAK GUST OF 67 MPH 
ALSO SET A NEW MAY GUST RECORD. THE OLD RECORD WAS 63 MPH IN 2009. 

AT BOZEMAN AIRPORT...AN AVERAGE WIND SPEED OF 18.1 MPH ON 3 MAY WAS 
THE THIRD HIGHEST MAY AVERAGE OF RECORD...AND THE WINDIEST DAY SINCE 
APRIL 2004. THE WIND GUST OF 69 MPH...WHEN THE COLD FRONT PASSED ON 
3 MAY...SET A NEW MAY GUST RECORD. THE OLD RECORD WAS 63 MPH IN 
1988. THIS WAS ALSO THE HIGHEST WIND GUST AT BOZEMAN AIRPORT SINCE 
NOVEMBER 1958.

STORM SUMMARY...
PRECIPITATION...
HEAVY SNOWFALL WAS CONCENTRATED OVER THE HIGHER ELEVATIONS. ONE AREA 
WAS OVER THE ROCKY MOUNTAINS...WITH ANOTHER AREA CLOSER TO THE 
SURFACE LOW...OVER THE BEARS PAW MOUNTAINS. UP TO 22 INCHES OF SNOW 
FELL...WITH LESSER AMOUNTS OVER THE LITTLE BELTS AND SNOWYS. ROCKY 
BOY SNOTEL RECORDED THREE INCHES OF PRECIPITATION. AMOUNTS OF UP TO 
8 INCHES OF SNOW WERE RECEIVED FROM THE SNOWS AND SIX INCHES IN THE 
LITTLE BELTS. THE STRONG WINDS PACKED THE SNOW INTO DRIFTS SIX FEET 
DEEP ON THE EAST SLOPES OF THE BEARS PAWS.

THROUGH 4 MAY...ROCKY BOY SNOTEL HAS RECEIVED 19.20 INCHES OF 
PRECIPITATION FOR THE CURRENT WATER YEAR. THIS IS THE HIGHEST 
AMOUNT-TO-DATE SINCE RECORDS BEGAN IN 1996. AT CRYSTAL LAKE 
SNOTEL...32.80 INCHES HAVE ACCUMULATED. THIS IS THE MOST TO-DATE IN 
THE WATER YEAR SINCE THEIR RECORDS BEGAN IN 1978. THE WATER YEAR 
BEGINS 1 OCTOBER.

WIND...
GUSTS TO 70 MPH FROM THE COLD FRONTAL PASSAGE ON 3 MAY WERE OBSERVED 
IN THE BOZEMAN AREA...WITH GUSTS TO 64 MPH OVER SOUTHERN TOOLE 
COUNTY. AS THE STORM INTENSIFIED...STRONGER AND HIGHER SUSTAINED 
WIND SPEEDS WERE REPORTED OVER CENTRAL MONTANA. GUSTS TO 79 MPH 
OCCURRED AT ROY...WITH MANY AREAS REPORTING GUSTS TO NEAR 70 MPH. 
BESIDES LOGAN PASS...THE STRONGEST GUST IN THE STATE...81 
MPH...OCCURRED AT ISMAY IN CUSTER COUNTY. THESE WIND GUSTS APPEAR TO 
BE THE HIGHEST NON-THUNDERSTORM WIND GUSTS OF RECORD FOR MAY IN 
MONTANA. A 110 MPH GUST AT LOGAN PASS ON 3 MAY SET A NEW MAY GUST 
RECORD IN MONTANA. THE OLD RECORD WAS 99 MPH AT LOGAN PASS IN MAY 
2004. 

FOR ADDITIONAL INFORMATION AND GRAPHICS...REFER TO 
http://WWW.WRH.NOAA.GOV/TFX/PDFS/STORMS/2010MAY04.PDF
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One Response to “A new storm summary issued by NWS”

  1. mtwxgirl Says:

    Nice summary TFX!

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