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Although a strong cold front promised relief from the Mid-Atlantic heat and humidity it didn’t bring much shear with it. Thus today’s chase was yet another “shelfie-fest”with a squall line providing the outflow.

Heading out just after 1 pm today I rolled to Rocky Mount to refuel the chasemobile and choose whether to continue south on U.S. 220 or go east on VA Route 40. After reviewing radar I chose the latter as a squall line was taking on the typical southwest – northeast orientation associated with a cold front passage. This time tho’ I didn’t stop in Glade Hill but maneuvered south and west from there to a Franklin county hilltop.shelf from Franklin county vantage

When the shelf cloud began to fill the western horizon I continued east and south along more rural roads into Pittsylvania county. At this point the shelf was very close so I didn’t stick around long to watch:

As I pushed further east I stopped intermittently for short periods to observe the shelf at close hand with rain nipping at my heels:Right behind me

I wound up heading south on Virginia Route 41 toward Danville and then diverting east to U.S. 29 near Blairs. At this point the leading edge of the northern section of the line was east of Rte 29 while the southern section was dissipating. I did drop all the way south to U.S. 58 in Danville where I paused to grab a snack and evaluate the situation.

With little hope of anything more interesting to see (retreating in front of shelf clouds gets old after a couple hours) I called off the chase and headed home. It was an enjoyable and relaxing chase but I’m itching for something more. Unfortunately without tropical help this time of year doesn’t hold much more potential.

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