Marko Posavec Photography

Hailstorm Hailing the Arrival of Spring

March 26th brought the first thunder and the first hail of the season. Actually, it was more like graupel than actual hail, but still. The instabilities were well foreseen by the forecast models and I anticipated their arrival.

Lightning detectors started cracking a little after 14:00, about 150 kilometers southwest. Some two hours later a small storm cell arrived over the Bilogora hills, rumbling with thunder, but not exactly what you’d call visually appealing. Radar imagery suggested that it was going to miss the town and pass along Bilogora, to the west. That’s why I set out to at least get some distance shots.

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What the radar initially failed to show, however, was that another cell, even smaller, trailed alongside the first one and headed right for Koprivnica. Fortunately, I didn’t have to go far for that fact to become obvious. The curtain was coming in fast, accompanied by occasional thunder.

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And when I realized that there’s some hard precipitation in that mix, I quickly turned around and drove back home. Mere seconds after I arrived, the show started.

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I got it on video as well.

It was over as quickly as it started. The hail or graupel was small enough not to do any damage.

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Both of these are, in a way, signs of springtime.

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For the record, here’s the radar data.

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Lightning detector.

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Satellite view.

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Weather station data.

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