The first weekend of August turned out to be a busy one storm-wise in South Florida, with heavy rainfall, waterspouts and vivid lightning striking a tall downtown Miami condo / building. All thanks to a tropical disturbance in the area, and outflow boundaries dancing all over the state.
Sunday afternoon I headed out like I normally do this time of year in search of late afternoon sea-breeze thunderstorms. The sea and lake breeze boundaries were a mess on Sunday, as the tropical disturbance over the Bahamas was creating a lot of thunderstorm activity and sending out boundaries in every direction making it hard to zone in on the best convergence area's.
I head out west towards my hot spots to chase near Lake Okeechobee. This is where I found an ongoing thunderstorm over the center of the lake slowly moving southeastward in my general direction. I was sitting up on the levee / dike at Port Mayaca and had a perfect view of the storm moving closer.
While on the phone talking to a friend, I noticed what looked to be a developing funnel cloud, but wasn't sure yet as it was covered up by some rain. About 7-10 minutes later the funnel became more organized and I had to hangup the call and start shooting video. Sure enough, a waterspout was developing, so I grabbed up my gear and fired off several shots before it dissipated about 2 minutes later. It was a very short-lived waterspout, and I wish it was a few miles closer so I could of captured some better detail.
From here I decided I would head for Miami in hopes of capturing some night lightning over the waterfront. I drove south through western Palm Beach and Broward counties on US 27 dodging cloud-to-ground lightning strikes. I finally got into Miami, and storms were moving in from the northwest and south-southeast. It was looking like a good convergence zone would setup not far from Miami Beach and downtown.
I setup a quick timelapse video (as seen below) of the developing heavy rains moving into downtown, and once I was over taken by the heavy rainfall I shot off the (top picture) lightning photo hitting the building along the waterfront. The storm lasted about an hour before tracking north-northeast up the coast and moving offshore.
A fun late Sunday to chase down some South Florida storms.