Saturday, November 19, 2011

Major Mid-November 2011 Storm Event


November 19, 2011
Little Stony Basin of Clinch River
Bark Camp Lake of High Knob Massif
Snow In Woods & Ice On Lake In Wake Of Storm
Photograph by Roddy Addington - © All Rights Reserved.

Beautiful reflections which appeared clear on free water and blurry upon ice covering the surface of Bark Camp Lake were captured by photographer Roddy Addington during bitter morning hours of November 19 in the wake of a major storm event that left a covering of snow throughout forests of the High Knob Massif.

[ MIN temperatures in low-mid 10s amid colder mountain basins covered by snow aided partial freezing of the lake surface which was still rippling from a whopping 6.74" of total precipitation hand-measured by Otis & Nancy Ward near Robinson Knob, amid the head of Little Stony Basin ].


November 2011
Measurable Precipitation Days
Robinson Knob of High Knob Massif
Elevation 3240 feet
( Daily Amounts Ending At 8 AM )

11/04:  1.00"

11/10:  0.05"

11/15:  0.87"
11/16:  1.71"
11/17:  4.04"
11/18:  0.12"

November 15-18 Total:  6.74"

November 1-18 Total: 7.79"

Total Since September 1: 20.74"

2011 Total: 73.15" ( M )

12-Month Total: 80.55" ( M )
*( November 19, 2010 to November 18, 2011 )

( M ) - Indicates some missing moisture amid winter snowfall and smaller evaporative losses between hand-measurements during the cold season ( 4"-diameter NWS rain gage ).

*Significant rain gage moisture loss occurred in December 2010 when Joe & Darlene Fields measured 55" of snow in nearby High Chaparral ( 65" to 70" fell at highest elevations in the massif ).


My friends Otis & Nancy Ward measured 4.04" of precipitation for the 24-hours ending at 8 AM on November 17 as strong winds aided production of heavy rainfall across the High Knob Landform via significant orographic forcing ( with 2" of snow depth ).

Run-off From High Knob Massif
Flash Flooding In East Stone Gap - Wise County, VA
Thomas Aistrop Photograph to WCYB-TV Archives

Run-off from all this rain turned whitewater creeks draining the High Knob Massif into raging torrents, with some minor flash flooding along either side of the rugged Wise-Scott border.

Clinch River of the Upper Tennessee River Basin
Clinch River Rises 13.88 Vertical Feet At Speers Ferry

Although remaining well below flood stage, the Clinch River at Speers Ferry rose sharply to 16.59 feet for a total rise of nearly 14 vertical feet during November 15-17.

Powell River of the Upper Tennessee River Basin
Powell River Rises 12.83 Vertical Feet Near Jonesville

[ Capturing of water by Big Cherry Lake, Bark Camp Lake, the dual Norton Reservoirs, and High Knob Lake in combination with wetlands and major subterranean conduit systems helped to retain billions of gallons of water within the High Knob Massif itself ( more than 1 Billion gallons are held in its 5 main mountain top lakes alone ) ].

Specific Storm Precipitation Totals
Across Southwest Virginia
( November 15-18, 2011 )

Galax WTP: 0.68"

Tout Dale 3 SSE: 0.77"

Blacksburg: 0.93"

Independence 1.3 S: 0.93"

Grayson Highlands State Park: 1.12"

Meadows Of Dan 5 SW: 1.25"

Bluefield ( West Virginia ): 1.35"

Wytheville 1 S: 1.42"

Bland: 1.46"

Marion 4.4 WSW: 1.60"

Abingdon 3 S: 1.77"

Burkes Garden: 1.80"

Grundy: 1.90"

Saltville 1 N: 1.91"

Clintwood 1 W: 2.17"

Richlands: 2.57"

Lebanon: 2.91"

Nora 4 SSE: 3.01"

Coeburn Filter Plant: 3.09"

Jonesville 3.1 WSW: 3.18"

Appalachia Lake Water Plant: 3.34"

Big Stone Gap Water Plant: 4.12"

Norton Water Plant: 4.13"

Silver Leaf: 4.40"
( 14 miles SW of Jonesville )

Robinson Knob of High Knob Massif: 6.74"

November 19, 2011
High Knob Massif Crest Zone
Looking From Snow Covered Slopes Into Great Valley
Photograph by Roddy Addington - © All Rights Reserved.

Morning light illuminated smoke plumes from the Eastman Chemical Company sitting amid the Great Valley of northeast Tennessee, in Kingsport, more than 25 air miles to the SSE of the snow covered High Knob highcountry.

An Awesome ZOOM Shot by Roddy!

[ The above photograph illustrating that the High Knob Landform and its remnant massif of highcountry is closer to the Tri-Cities than many might think, such that it tends to have a major impact upon the climate ( especially during winter ) of Kingsport and much of the Great Valley of northeast Tennessee ].

November 19, 2011
Third Day With Snow Cover
Clinch Ranger District - Jefferson National Forest
Lingering Snow & Ferns In High Knob Massif
Photograph by Roddy Addington - © All Rights Reserved.

A general 1" to 3" of snow stuck across mid-upper elevations during November 17 as cold air poured into the backside of this major mid month storm system ( many more snow photos will be highlighted below ).

[ This event marked the 6th time snow had fallen on the High Knob Massif since October 1, 2011 ].

My friend Joe Carter reported 2" of snowfall at Norton Water Plant, nestled amid the north base of the High Knob Massif, with 1" to 1.5" being the deepest ground depth observed at 2342 feet.

November 19, 2011
Remnant Massif of High Knob Landform
Melting & Freezing Forms A Mermaid Icicle

An interesting icicle, complete with scales and all, took the shape of a Mermaid's tail as melting snow and refreezing in cold air combined to produce this rather unique moment in time!

Elevation 2734 feet
Bark Camp Lake of High Knob Massif
Overflowing From Run-off On November 19, 2011
Photograph by Roddy Addington - © All Rights Reserved.

A beautiful, cold morning at Bark Camp Lake as the more open expanses of the lake surface ripple with water on its way to overflow the Dam into Little Stony Creek of the Clinch River.

November 19, 2011
Bark Camp Lake of High Knob Massif
Majesty Of A Frosty Cold Morning On Oak Leaves
Photograph by Roddy Addington - © All Rights Reserved.


Cloud Streets Develop In Wake Of Storm
( November 17, 2011 )

Afternoon of November 17, 2011
Big Turbulent Clouds Develop Into Streets
Photograph by Roddy Addington - © All Rights Reserved.

[ Observe distinct roll structures on the above clouds captured by Roddy from the Wise area ].

Horizontal Convective Rolls, or Cloud Streets, developed with unstable air in the wake of the main storm event to create dramatic scenes across the southern Appalachians.

NASA Visible Image At 3:15 PM - November 17, 2011
Image Courtesy of the Earth Science Office

Snowy northern slopes of the High Knob Massif between Norton & Coeburn are highlighted below beneath a huge, dark mass of billowing clouds capping the highcountry.

PM of November 17, 2011
Northern Slopes of High Knob Massif
Horizontal Convective Roll Clouds Above Snowy Slopes
Photograph by Roddy Addington - © All Rights Reserved.

[ A brief period of afternoon snow showers developed with these cloud streets over the higher elevations ].


The Snow Event Of
November 17, 2011

Elevation 3300 feet
November 17, 2011 at 6:38 AM
Predawn Snowfall In High Chaparral of High Knob Massif
Photograph by Darlene Fields - © All Rights Reserved.

My friend Darlene Fields took these pictures on her way to work, with snow falling briskly and having covered everything in sight!

High Chaparral of High Knob Massif
Snow Along Edge Of Road - Predawn of November 17
Photograph by Darlene Fields - © All Rights Reserved.

Snow continued to fall for several more hours after these scenes, with 2" of accumulation reported by Otis & Nancy Ward by the time it ended at this elevation in the High Chaparral-Robinson Knob communities.

[ Snow totals of 2" to 3" were common across upper elevations in the High Knob Massif ( above 3000 feet ) ].

Elevation 2650 feet
Long Ridge of the Tennessee Valley Divide
Moderate to Heavy Snow At 9:31 AM - Nora 4 SSE
Photograph by Genevie Riner - © All Rights Reserved.

My friend Genevie Riner captured some of the heaviest snow at 9:31 AM as a burst formed on the backside of the main snowband.

[ Genevie officially measured 1.6" of snowfall at Nora 4 SSE by conclusion of this event ].

Snow Accumulation On The Deck 
Photograph by Genevie Riner - © All Rights Reserved.

Southern Dickenson County
Highlands of the Tennessee Valley Divide
The Orchard Road & Pasture - November 17, 2011
Photograph by Genevie Riner - © All Rights Reserved.

Genevie captured many beautiful scenes as clouds began to break up, allowing sunshine to glisten off the fresh snow!

November 17, 2011
Long Ridge of the Tennessee Valley Divide
Beauty of Red Berries Enhanced By Fresh Snow
Photograph by Genevie Riner - © All Rights Reserved.

A Christmas scene come early as there is nothing like snow and red berries to brighten any setting!

November 17, 2011
Long Ridge of the Tennessee Valley Divide
The Garden, Pasture, And Mountains Beyond!
Photograph by Genevie Riner - © All Rights Reserved.

Beautiful highlands of the Tennessee Valley Divide always look refreshed beneath a new fall of snow.

November 17, 2011
Across Russell Fork Basin To NE End Pine Mountain
Photograph by Genevie Riner - © All Rights Reserved.


Public Pictures From
The News 5 Weather Archive

November 17, 2011
Looking To City of Norton From U.S. 23
Submitted by Mike to WCYB-TV

November 17, 2011
Snow In The Town of Wise
Submitted by Anthony Bowen to WCYB-TV

November 17, 2011
Snow On Caney Ridge - Dickenson County
Submitted by Summer S. to WCYB-TV

This November 15-18 storm episode may prove to be even more important than it was given that a couple more significant storms are likely to impact the local mountains before the month ends, creating a wild ending to Autumn 2011.


More Scenes Of Interest
Early-Mid November 2011

November 14, 2011
Lee County of the High Knob Landform
Little Rascal In A Tree - RacoonProcyon Lotor )
Photograph by Harold Jerrell - © All Rights Reserved.

Photographer Harold Jerrell found a little rascal up a tree who wanted to pose for a nice portrait!

I hope he thanked Harold for such a fine picture!

November 6, 2011
Above Cumberland Gap and "Stand In The Gap"
Beautiful Cirrus Clouds ( Cirrus uncinus & Cirrus fibratus )
Photograph by Harold Jerrell - © All Rights Reserved.


A gorgeous array of cirrus clouds decorated the heavens above the "Stand In The Gap" event held on November 6.

November 6, 2011
Above Downtown Cumberland Gap 
Cirrus uncinus & Cirrus fibratus ) With Other Forms
Photograph by Harold Jerrell - © All Rights Reserved.

Clouds are actually classified like flora & fauna, with specific genus and species names.

How many knew that fact?

The clouds above formed as ice crystals very high in the atmosphere ahead of a warm front to mark the most beautiful ( calm ) days of November 2011.


( Updated November 24, 2011 )
Another Significant Rain Event

November 14, 2011
Lee County of the High Knob Landform
Little Rascal In A Tree 2 - Racoon ( Procyon Lotor )
Photograph by Harold Jerrell - © All Rights Reserved.

Another significant storm event dropped a general 1.50" to 2.00"+ of rainfall upon wetter portions of the High Knob Landform during November 20-23.

November 2011 precipitation totals were boosted to between 9.00" and 10.00" in wetter parts of the High Knob Massif, with nearly 7.00" measured in the City of Norton.

Climate Statistics
November 1-23

City of Norton - Elevation 2141 feet
Average Daily MAX: 55.8 degrees
Average Daily MIN: 31.6 degrees
MEAN: 43.7 degrees
Highest Temperature: 65 degrees
Lowest Temperature: 17 degrees
November 1-23 Precipitation: 6.94"
November Snowfall: 2.0"
2011 Precipitation: 69.69"

The wettest city or town in Virginia, resting amid the lifting zone of the High Knob Massif, is living up to its climatology in 2011 with the third 20.00"+ season in a row.

City of Norton Precipitation

Spring 2011
22.17"

Summer 2011
20.38"

Autumn 2011
( September 1 to November 23 )
21.19"

2011 Precipitation: 69.69"

12-Month Precipitation: 77.13"
( November 24, 2010 - November 23, 2011 )

*Precipitation hand-measured at 9 AM daily in an official 8"-diameter NWS rain gage by Superintendent Tommy Roberts & Staff of the Norton Water Plant.


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