19. August 2017 · Comments Off on August 19: Nebraska · Categories: Great Plains 2017

It’s the Great American Eclipse weekend and a trip was planned to drive across Nebraska and South Dakota to chase storms and view the solar event. Sunday was supposed to be the chase day but turns out that Saturday was the event!

While on route to Kearney, our target for the nights’ sleep, there were two nice but somewhat disorganized cells a few hours’ drive north. Thinking the day was a complete bust the northernmost cell became tor warned. Then a third cell southwest of the first two started showing a slight hint of rotation. That prompted us to start chase.

We caught up with the storms at Taylor. We had a perfect view of the cell which now showed impressive velocities (135kts). Couldn’t believe how quickly it organized into one of the most beautiful supercells I’ve chased, let alone one that produced a cone-shaped tornado (that eventually became rain wrapped). There were multiple areas of rotation and for a brief period there may have been two tors.

29. May 2017 · Comments Off on May 29: New Mexico & Colorado · Categories: Great Plains 2017

Thanks to the forecasting skills of my talented counterparts we got on to the only severe-warned storm in the region. Today wasn’t even forecasted to be a marginal day but the Raton mesa provided us with a nice storm to photograph what with it’s low-hanging mammatus in a picturesque setting. We followed the storm from Capulin, NM up into southeastern Colorado where it organized and became more photogenic. Thankfully the storm was slow-moving so we had plenty of time to get ahead of it and snap photos.

One of my favorite days chasing!

26. May 2017 · Comments Off on May 26: Idalia, CO · Categories: Great Plains 2017

On Friday, we found our way back to Idalia while chasing a magnificently sculpted supercell. We were once in perfect position where it almost produced a tornado. However, it evetually produced a tornado that was rain wrapped and therefore out of sight. That said, we had an exceptionally fun day following and photographing this storm. Gotta love those inflow bands!

25. May 2017 · Comments Off on May 25: Idalia, CO · Categories: Great Plains 2017

What a great day! Followed a well-formed supercell across eastern Colorado where it eventually produced a tornado for ~5 minutes… it never formed a condensation funnel but thoroughly enjoyed seeing the rotating dust cloud set against a colorful sky.

23. May 2017 · Comments Off on May 23: Colorado · Categories: Great Plains 2017

On our day off we headed to Great Sand Dunes National Park to catch the sunset. What a beautiful sight!

Great Sand Dunes National Park, Colorado

22. May 2017 · Comments Off on May 22: Hobbs, NM · Categories: Great Plains 2017

We found our way to eastern New Mexico to get on a bunch of storms, while some tornado warned, wound up producing only hail and wind… And some nice rainbows!

21. May 2017 · Comments Off on May 21: Keyes, OK · Categories: Great Plains 2017

We had a great day chasing a poorly organized supercell that eventually got its act together. When we arrived near Keyes, Oklahoma it was producing some nice lightning… and luckily we had a nice wooden house that provided for a perfect subject of a photo.

20. May 2017 · Comments Off on May 20: Dust Devils · Categories: Great Plains 2017

When it’s a quiet day storm-wise, why not stop to photograph some dust devils while driving to the next target?!

18. May 2017 · Comments Off on May 18: Waynoka, OK · Categories: Great Plains 2017

First day out on my second trip to the Great Plains yielded a beautiful tornado with intense rotation near Waynoka, Oklahoma. Quite a few chasers were on this storm and thankfully no injuries were reported.

29. April 2017 · Comments Off on April 29: Eastern Texas · Categories: Great Plains 2017

It was a rather intense chase day in eastern Texas. Initially we planned to stay in Greenville and look for storms firing just to the west, but once we saw the cells further southeast we made our way to Mineola to stay on the east side of the storms in hopes of getting a clear view of any circulation. Long story short, we dropped south to get onto TX-64 where we intercepted the second tornado just south of central Canton.

On radar we saw yet another area of intensifying rotation which concerned us. It appeared to be headed towards the same general vicinity as the previous tornado just a bit further east. This storm just seemed to keep producing tornadoes over the same area while slowly sliding northeast… At one point it felt like it was chasing us as we kept heading east on I-20 waiting for the system to weaken so we could reverse course and drive back to Dallas.

It was heartbreaking to see so much damage, and of course hear about the injuries and loss of life. If you’re interested in helping out the folks of Canton this is where you can: http://www.redcross.org/