Over the years I have been asked quite a few questions about thunderstorms. I've always tried to answer them to the best of my ability, but when going through them I saw that I had the basis for a thunderstorm forecasting guide, and decided I should draw all of my presentations and answers to questions together and add a little bit extra to create a thunderstorm forecasting guide.
This is just a guide of my own opinion, there are many ways to forecast thunderstorms and understand how they work. This guide is also heavily focused on Australian thunderstorm activity - however the fundamental principles are the same. I do want to stress one thing though...
The single most important
thing to thunderstorm forecasting
Remember, this is a guide
only - the second most important thing to
thunderstorm forecasting is experience!
That is something that no books or guides can ever teach - it can only
be taught from hard work and patience.
A new program to create your own soundings
and assess storm potential has been made!
Part One - The Basics
5). Applying everything learnt in Part One to a real storm day! (A practical perspective). (PDF)
Part Two - Skew-Ts
10. Applying everything learnt in Part Two to a real storm day! (A practical perspective). (PDF)
Part Three - More On Shear
13). Applying everything learnt in Part Three to a real storm day! (A practical perspective). (PDF)
Part Four - Thinking Outside The Square
20). Severe thunderstorms in poor shear and instability (January 21, 2003 Darling Downs Microbursts). (PDF)
I would also like to strongly recommend Jimmy Deguara's guide on "Weather Observation Techniques" for learning about "reading the sky." I believe it is an excellent supplement to this guide!
The above sections are simply my own thoughts and opinions on thunderstorms and forecasting thunderstorms. There are many different ways of forecasting thunderstorms - this is just a guide with my advice. I hold no responsibility for the actions you may take in the course of reading this.
Please do not reproduce any of the material in this guide without permission. Permission will normally be granted for non-profit activities, please contact me by emailing me.