The Palm Springs area is known for it’s beautiful weather, especially now during ‘the season.’ For most, today was no exception. For some it was nuts!
I planned on showing a telescopic image of last night’s asteroid fly-by. It’s cool show-and-tell. I got to do that at five, but it was quickly pushed off my agenda.
My forecast yesterday called for moderate to strong winds this afternoon. By 4:30 police had closed Gene Autry Trail in Palm Springs because of reduced visibility in blowing sand! I quickly worked up a graphic showing the gusts tonight.
As we went to air (and the road reopened) I got a photo of what looked like a funnel cloud. I hurriedly pushed that into my TriCaster and aired it a few minutes later.
It was probably a landspout. Conventional tornadoes come from mature storm cells. Landspouts are weak tornadoes that form early as storms are building.
This evening I got the video you see at the bottom of this entry. It’s the landspout near Desert Center (population around 150), a rural community surrounded by sandy wilderness. I showed it briefly at 9:00 and will feature it again at 11:00.
The landspout was unexpected, unforecast and unseen by Doppler radar! Luckily, It did no harm. It made for great TV.