While the weekend will cool significantly, the level of thunderstorm activity should pick up significantly as well. A weak low pressure center sliding up the coast of California will bring some deep moisture from the south, and the cloudiness will keep our high temperatures down to near 90 degrees, but will also up the chances of showers and thunderstorms. These cells probably won’t be moving very quickly, and therefore could produce localized heavy rainfall and even possible flash flooding. Thunderstorms will be in the forecast through the weekend and into early next week, before a drying trend returns beginning Tuesday.
Lightning is one of the most fascinating and unpredictable of nature’s phenomena. And one of the most misunderstood.
For instance, even though a bolt of lightning looks like it is several feet across, it’s actually barely the width of a pencil. It only appears wider because it is so bright.
On average, there are between 50-100 cloud to ground lightning strikes every second world-wide.
While the thunder from a bolt of lightning can only be heard about 12 miles away, at night under the right conditions lightning can be seen up to 100 miles away.
While most of the time it looks like lightning only strikes once, it is actually a series of strokes in rapid succession (usually 3-4, but sometimes over 20) separated by about 40 ms.
The average lightning bolt is 6-8 miles long, but in 2001, a visual detection system recorded a single lightning bolt that travelled from Waco to Dallas, TX, a distance of 110 miles.