2 named Atlantic storms in 2 weekends, Storm Ciara and Storm Dennis
Over the last 2 weeks a fast jet stream has been in control of our weather, these 2 storms got some serious media attention because of flooding and strong gusts they would bring. of course this isnt unusual weather for our country. sometimes I get annoyed at some of the hype that comes with these named storms with some insane bogus forecasts and the constant clickbait articles that come with them. Im not saying that the met office shouldn't put warnings in place. its other weather pages and media that over hype and when they do the public don't take warnings seriously and therefore might put people at risk. you just have too look what happened in England and wales.
anyways that said I love a good atlantic storm at the coast. wind direction wasn't ideal for the biggest waves on north coast but I did have hope for some good enough waves too photograph during these storms.
storm Ciara came first. wind direction was south west so gust wernt that bad for us in the north compared too the south west and west coast.
I headed for portstewart where i have seen many atlantic storms, I headed down too the sea front and started documenting the sea and taking wind readings. the highest gust from storm Ciara that i recorded from harbour hill was 48mph
image below when i recorded 43mph my peak reading was 48mph
while on Harbour hill i photographed the huge waves crashing on the harbour wall in the cove I also photographed lots of scenes from around the area and captured some nice dramatic scenes
a weekend after storm Dennis arrived i was on 2 minds too chase or not because winds were the exact same as storm Ciara. Lucky enough Friend martin McKenna give me the heads up that the sea was pretty active. so I jumped in the car and drove up too Portballintrae first. some beautiful massive waves with fantastic light were visible from carpark. after a while I had a few squally showers passing that produced thunder and lightning further west. I hadn't my anemometer with me but friend Martin Mckenna was up at Gortmore and the same cell caused 70mph+ squall winds so it was pretty severe.
after photographing the wonderful active atlantic at Portballintrae. I headed for the beautiful ballintoy harbour. there I witnessed a lot of photographers taking un necessary risks too get an image going far too close too the sea. I don't understand why some photographers use wide angle lenses and nd filters during these storms. surely you want too capture the waves crashing at their best. why anybody would want too smooth out the ocean on days like this is like giving you half the picture. that's my personal opinion anyways. I would rather stand back in relative safety use anything from 35mm right up too 200mm. its only a matter of time before someone is killed. an image isn't worth anyones life. sorry but just thought that needed too be said.
anyways i enjoyed the time i had at Ballintoy here is a set of images from there.
all and all I had a great time over the 2 weeks documenting the storms. the jetstream is showing no signs of slowing down so i expect a few more storms on the lead up too spring.
Another low risk set up, A combination of cold air aloft, surface convergence and 200-400 J/kg of CAPE helped trigger widespread Heavy showers and Isolated thunderstorms. I wasn't hopefull on thunder storms cause with these kind of setups you never no but I thought I would chase and give it a go.
as it got closer it was growing in size all the time as it moved west, suddenly it was over me so took this pano shot before the precip hit, this storm eventually sparked 10mile futher east just outside Portadown and Lurgan
I then knew there was potential for more storms too develop It was then I noticed a line of red cores on radar just outside Donegal, they were my next target as they moved east they intensified and I chose too Intercept them in Cookstown. when I got too cookstown It looked rather messy and grey with not much happening I stuck around for abit and waited for the back end of the storm too appear, this was it
I then drove back too dungannon. which was abit of a mistake because when I checked radar again there was another storm developing just outside Omagh Strabane area. I turned and went back and tried too get infront of it. as I was driving out a nice CG lightning strike hit at distance, it was a nice site too see. I then pulled over and got the camera out in the van. I filmed through the precip core for about 15mins sadly it never happened again I then waited for the backend of the storm too appear again and took this shot giving you a sence of height and scale of the storm taken wit 10mm lens
all and all a good enough chase from a low risk day,
On to the Next
footage of the developing storm below.