Brunt of storm hits north of Tucumcari, Conchas

By QCS Staff

Athough a tornado touched down about nine miles north of Tucumcari, no inuries were reported and damage was limited from Wednesday night’s storm, the Naitonal Weather Service said.

Several funnel clouds were spotted, but there was only one touch down, said NWS meteorologist Jonathan Suk.

It was one of the most active days for tornado watches throughout the state, Suk said.

“There were no injuries and no damage from the tornado,” Suk said. “Damage was reported from hail.”

Two-inch sized hail was reported in Conchas, and hail was reported west of Tucumcari and in Nara Visa, Suk said.

High winds downed tree limbs and there was 3.32 inches of hail and rain, said Gary Cordova, U.S. Corps of Engineers project manager at Conchas Dam. The hail ranged in size from a quarter to fifty-cent pieces, Cordova said.

The Conchas Lake elevation was up 0.22 of an inch, and capacity went from 95,306 acre feet to 96,128, a gain of 822 acre feet, Cordova said.

The elevation increased to 4165.72 from 4165.50, Cordova said.

“The Trementina, Cuervo and Conchas creeks are running fast, but nothing is coming in from the Canadian side” Cordova said.

Visibility was down to 12 feet or less during the storm, and there was an unconfirmed report of a tornado north of the lake, said San Miguel County Sheriff ‘s deputy Jack Hartigan.

“The main roads are open but you still need a 4-wheel drive on some of the secondary roads,” Hartigan said.

In Logan, about 2 inches of rain fell south of Ute Lake, and 1 inch was recorded on the north side, said Larry Wallin, village administrator.

“We had some fast running water and a few secondary road washouts, but everything was fixed by this morning,” Wallin said.

This morning melting hail littered the sides Highway 104, north of Tucumcari, and some sections of low lying areas and fields were flooded following the storm.

The hail pounded trees, vehicles and rooftops and the rain was heavy for about 45 minutes Wednesday night, said Bev Lake.

Lake and her husband, Mark Lake, live on Highway 104 north of the Pajarito Creek.

This morning the Lakes were checking on their three horses and three that belong to their son, Joshua Lake.

“We thought we’d lost one, but she eventually showed up,” Mark Lake said.

“We had quite the storm. It really came down. It was hailing in my shop,” after the hail broke one of his shop windows, Mark Lake said.

“Lighting also hit behind the house.”

“It pretty well cleaned up the trees. I thought I was through raking for the spring,” Mark Lake said.

Mark Lake said his son’s home, which is next door, and his vehicles, also received some damage from the hail.

While a dark cloud mass was seen north of Tucucmari before sunset, there was only a slight rain in the city of Tucumcari.