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The Weather Channel reports a lone thunderstorm dumped over a foot of hail in the town of Santa Rosa, New Mexico last Wednesday evening (July 3, 2013), leaving a surreal sight the day before the Fourth of July.
Photos from the Santa Rosa Fire Department showed snow plows clearing city streets clogged with accumulated hail drifts. According to the National Weather Service in Albuquerque, hail up to golfball size pelted the city around 6:00 p.m. MDT.
Although this sounds strange, accumulating hail is not uncommon in the High Plains according to TWC. Northeast New Mexico sits in what meteorologists call “Hail Alley“, a swath from southeast Wyoming and northeast Colorado to northeast New Mexico and the Texas Panhandle, where large hail falls on average at least three days a year.
And, considering much of the country is sweltering with intense heat, we thought this might be a “cool” set of Friday Fotos to share.
A police vehicle navigates a hail-clogged street in Santa Rosa, N.M. on July 3, 2013. (Credit: N.M. State Police)
A few of accumulated hail on a street in Santa Rosa, N.M. on July 3, 2013. (Credit: N.M State Police)
As fyi … above is the record-setting hailstone that fell in Vivian, South Dakota on July 23, 2010. The hailstone broke the U.S. records for largest hailstone by diameter (8 inches / 20 cm) and weight (1 pound 15 ounces). Credit: NWS Aberdeen, SD
TWC writes some other unusual hailstorm events include:
We also found a short video by TWC’s Dr Greg Forbes explaining how thunderstorms produce hail.
Stay safe and cool out there .. and have a great weekend! j & B