Minutes of the High Plains AMS/NWA Chapter
November 21, 2013
The Chapter of the High Plains
AMS/NWA held the first face to face meeting since March, 2012 on
Thursday, November 2013. There were 17 members able to attend,
despite the ongoing winter weather.
We met at 11:00 AM at the Destination Kitchen in Norton, KS. This
was the first time the chapter met at this establishment. Our
gathering started with a lunch, with great food and good service,
received well by all. After lunch, we recessed to a small room
for a presentation by Jeff Halblaub of the Hastings, NE forecast
office. Jeff’s presentation was entitled “Wake Lows and
Threats”. After Jeff Halblaub’s presentation, the business
The meeting was called to order by President Bill Taylor at 12:57
pm. President Bill welcomed all to our first “non”-virtual
meeting in over a year and a half. The first order of business
was to discuss the status of the 2014 High Plains conference.
Vice President Jeremy Wesely and Rick Ewald, both from the Hastings, NE
forecast office, briefed the attendees on the conference status.
The Hastings office will go forward with plans for the conference to be
held sometime in August, 2014 (before the hosting college is back in
session). The conference spaces will be reserved; a call for
papers will go out, and other pre-conference details taken care
of. Costs will be low, due in part to the Hastings College
providing space; few, if any, high cost Keynote speakers will be
contacted; and more young, first time speakers will be
approached. We want to get back to our Chapter’s original motive
to host a conference in which first time presenters would have a
comfortable environment to present. If the NWS budget is too
limited to support conference attendance, alterations will be made to
change the conference to a virtual conference. High Plains
members are asked to contact their respective MICs now, and ask them to
set some funds back dedicated to conference attendance.
Furthermore, each university in the high plains area will be contacted
in person by one of our members (who attended there), to speak to
meteorology classes about our conference, and specifically about the
student paper competition. The January to March timeframe was
suggested for these campus visits, to give students plenty of time to
prepare for an August presentation. Aaron Johnson, SOO, Dodge
City forecast office, suggested we offer the students some travel
expense funds, to encourage more student participation in the
conference. This student reimbursement issue will be voted on at
a later meeting.
Scott Bryant, Treasurer, reported the Available Balance on 11/20/13 was
$5,861.10. The Jim Johnson Scholarship Fund was at $1810.00,
leaving the Checkbook Balance at $4,051.10. All non-paid members
are encouraged to pay your 2014 dues of $15 by the next meeting.
The next meeting will be a virtual meeting on January 8th, 2014.
The presenter will be Greg Carbin, WCM from SPC. He will present
the “10 Ten Weather Events of 2013”. Vice President Jeremy Wesely
will send out login information prior to the January meeting.
The Jeff Halblaub presentation, “Wake Lows and Threats” was presented
nicely and was well received. He stressed how important
microphysics are to Wake Low development, while the Rear Inflow Jet
also plays a key role. Jeff also compared Wake Lows to Gravity
Waves, suggested they may be one and the same, but it is not
conclusive. A key parameter to watch for is diminishing
precipitation, which can precede the formation of a Wake Low and strong
winds. There are three stages common to a Wake Low event:
1) Heavy rain, 2) Rains taper off quickly, and 3) a sudden drop in Sea
Level Pressure. Then Jeff reviewed a case of a Wake Low from May
11th, 2011 in Northern Michigan. There was a couple of bands of
heavy thunderstorms, some with severe thunderstorm warnings. The
data in the area is quite sparse, and strong winds were hard to
detect. Jeff obtained a few reports from ships, one of which was
an isolated 40kt gust. Jeff later verified this strong
wind. In the Great Lakes area, Jeff stated that if you find a
40kt gust, then there is likely to be some kind of water level
fluctuation, such as in a locks or canals.