2009 TopEndDownUnder (Darwin, NT, Australia) Stormchase

Stormchase 27th November, 2009
Mangroves are wierd trees, they grow in thick black smelly mud with salt water on top, mangroves can be found just about everywhere along coastal parts of Darwin, they do however make good backdrops to tropical showers and that's where we start today's storm chase at East Point near one of Darwin's better beach areas, after trudging around in the sand an early storm cracks overhead, floods the local suburbs and typical of early convection, evaporates within 30 minutes.

The tropical moisture has really returned today with humidity up over 80% and virtually no wind. We head off to the flat country east of Darwin and wait for bigger things...we don't wait long ....by 2pm huge storms erupt east of Humpty Doo and we spent the next three hours dodging squalls/lightning and rotating bases...we were in storm heaven!! and then drive into a waterfall with no forward visibility...A 'white out' complete with swirling spray and tree branches. We head towards Noonamah and watch a gigantic tropical storm drop a rotating lowering. There are two remarkable events in a big tropical storm....they develop very fast and they die even faster !.....After 6pm we head back to Darwin for another spectacular sunset....

Report: Clyve Herbert

Photography: Jane ONeill / Clyve Herbert

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Early morning convection, Cox Peninsula

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Mangroves, East Point

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Early storm develops over Darwin seen from East Point

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Tranquillity & storm, East Point

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Mangroves grow along most coastal parts of Darwin

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Mangroves, waves & cirrus

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Early morning flash flood, Dick Ward Drive

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Some big multicells get going east of Humpty Doo

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Within minutes they combine to produce a jaw dropping anvil

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Main updraft core, developing severe storm, Fogg Dam

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Long flanking line, Fogg Dam

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This storm had a severe warning from BoM Darwin

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Complex structure of developing updraft, east of Humpty Doo

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The alignment of multicells now combined, develop a potent outflow boundary

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Birds scatter ahead of a cloudburst

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Short lived rotating lowering east of Humpty Doo

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The squall line advances west

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Near Humpty Doo the squall line starts to pack a real punch

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Massive rain free base southeast of Noonamah

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The flanking line starts to develop a rotating lowering

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Broad rotation briefly develops

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Rotating fractus touches the ground!

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Storm weakening rapidly near Noonamah

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Decaying shower, Nightcliff

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Interesting rock geology, Nightcliff

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The start of a spectacular sunset, Nightcliff boatramp

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One of the best sunsets we've seen in Darwin, Cullen Bay

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Spot the Douglas DC3!

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