January 4, 1998

We had quite an interesting storm blow through the area on Sunday...

A fast-moving thunderstorm raced through the area Sunday afternoon. The storm arrived from the NW at 1500, giving us VERY small hail (1/8 inch diameter at greatest - most stones weren't even 1/16 inch), occasional cloud-to-cloud lightning, and wind gusts to 24 mph. The storm was out of the area by 1515, so we only got .09 of an inch of rain out of the cell. What was most impressive was the amazing pressure increase that took place as the storm passed. At 1501, the pressure at my house was 29.91 inches. At 1518, it had risen all the way to 30.03 inches.

For once, Modesto Airport (MOD) got in on the action as well!!! Before yesterday, MOD had not reported a thunderstorm since May 1995. MOD also had stronger winds than my location 8 mi to the ESE - a wind gust to 35 mph.

Sunday's t'storm was our first of 1998. This has been the earliest in the year I've ever observed a t'storm here in my 11 yrs of records. Before that, the earliest in the year I observed a t'storm in Turlock was on Jan 9 in 1995.

Skies have cleared beautifully in the wake of the storm -- the peaks of the Sierra Nevada 100 mi to my E are clearly visible as I type this morning. The temp is back down to 30F - much of the rainwater did not evaporate overnight due to calm winds and a saturated airmass, so everything outside is pretty much covered with ice.