Photo Intermission – Stormy Weather @ Lučko

By me
All photos me too, copyrighted

Going through my posts of late, I’ve noticed that I haven’t seriously ranted about the local weather ever since my first MiG-21 post back in December 2013 :D. Thankfully for my consistency’s sake – but very little else – our occasionally unstable weather patterns are back with a vengeance, serving up bouts of rain and cold completely out of character for even the most pessimistic summer criteria. Whereas we should be consistently roasting at a nice 30-35 Centigrade, we’ve been increasingly forced to cower under thick bedsheets at 15-25 – and were we should have limitless sunny skies interrupted by just the occasional shower, we have stormy weeks taken straight out of dreary autumn…

The culprits for the disappearance of this year’s summer are increased numbers of cyclones and cold fronts passing through the region – pretty common stuff during the winter, but highly unusual (in this quantity at least) between June and September. While on the whole most do little more than spoil the occasional family holiday, some have brought considerable problems and devastation, the most notable being storm Yvette (known locally as Tamara) which had caused torrential flooding and severe loss of life across the whole region back in mid-May.

While it can in no way compare, the cold front that had set its sights on western and northern Croatia on 26 July was nevertheless one to remember (and in a bad way). Having spent most of the afternoon at Lučko – cleaning the trusty Skyhawk a bit – I was unintentionally at the right place and the right time to snap one of the largest single storm cells we’ve seen in years…

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The scale of the problem as seen by the Bilogora weather radar. Interrupted only by the hills of southern Slovenia, the front had extended all the way from Graz in Austria to Sarajevo in Bosnia, its curve stretching out to nearly 500 km. Traveling rather briskly northeast, it would hit Zagreb (labeled by ZG) in just half an hour.

The raw power of Nature never ceases to amaze . Bearing down on Lučko at speed, this fascinating storm cell - the size of which wasn't seen for years - will soon completely flood Lučko, dumping half a centimeter of water in just five minutes!

The raw power of Nature never ceases to amaze (and occasionally frighten). Bearing down on Lučko at speed, this fascinating storm cell would flood the entire airfield under a centimeter of standing water in just over five minutes!

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Barely minutes before the first raindrops would hit, the field was as quiet as a graveyard – except for the final stages of last-minute attempt to tie-down and secure every aircraft in sight.

Already at 17:30 we'd been given a preview of the evening's upcoming meteorological party. Leaving the biggest impression in the region of Zagorje, the growing cumulus clouds pictured were just part of a broad cold front, whose curve extended all the way from Maribor to Bihać...

Already at 17:30 local (15:30 Zulu) we’d been given a preview of the evening’s meteorological party. Dumping most of their contents on the region of Zagorje, the growing cumulus clouds pictured were the first elements of the front to reach Zagreb, prompting an expeditious wind-down of all flying operations…

2 thoughts on “Photo Intermission – Stormy Weather @ Lučko

  1. Pingback: Operations – The Empty Skies of Croatia | Achtung, Skyhawk!

  2. Pingback: Photo Report – 24th Zagreb Kup Precision Landing Championship | Achtung, Skyhawk!

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