We are two days away from meteorological spring, and twenty two days (or so) away from the official start of spring. So here are some thoughts about where we are as storm season approaches.
Here's another entry into the chase logs that I hadn't imported into the new site.
Of the two cells that began the day I chose the closest to my position to begin with, which was the northern cell that passed through south of Hobart. After chasing it for a while to the northeast there was no way I could keep up with it so I moved south to the second cell which was the first cell to go through the Fredrick/Lawton area. Then another cell was developing to the west of that one and I chose to move towards it figuring there would be a lot less traffic (I was right). I had a straight shot to the storm on Baseline Rd then it inexplicably turned from paved to dirt/mud road...so I had to wait on it south of Indiahoma. This was the second cell that ended up going through the Lawton area. I then moved north to follow this storm and got into blinding rain on a north/south road south of Elgin so I had to sit and wait for the storm to pass before I could move northward. On the way home, I went through Chickasha and downtown power had been lost and dealt with flooding...somehow I made it through that. Quite an eventful day even though I didn't see any tornadoes. Here are a few pics to start with, I have more that I have to weed through and will get them posted in a couple of days.
Continuing with the importing of my historic chase logs.
This was a confusing day because SPC had been showing an area in NW Oklahoma to be a 10% risk of tornadoes, but the forecast models were showing something completely different. I was seeing storms initiating in the eastern Texas panhandle and nothing was happening up north, at least at the time I got out and was able to chase. So, I headed west to Shamrock, Tx and sure enough storms initiated just to the west and to the south. Since this was my third straight day of chasing I was a little worn out, so I stuck with a cell that was just southwest of Shamrock hoping it would take off. But unlike the storms in Oklahoma the day before, on this one I chose poorly. It slowly evaporated, leaving nothing but a small shaft of rain. Meanwhile to the south near Childress, around 40 miles away there was a beast of a cell moving southeastward at about 30 mph and had a well defined hook echo, prompting it to go tornado warned. The problem I had with it wasn't that I couldn't catch it, it was it that it was such a beast and it basically covered the only road to the south, so it would take a massive core punch and some luck to get through it safely because you didn't know what you might come out and run into on the other side. But, I made my way down and it kept moving southeast and was just behind it when I reached Paducah, Tx. As I was passing through, lightning had set of a huge brush fire to the west clouding up the sky and adding to the area's woes. I went to the east and noticed debris on the road and just on the left side of the road was a barn that housed some classic cars...only the barn wasn't there anymore. Luckily for the owner the cars were still there. I'm pretty sure a small tornado had to have obliterated the barn...sheet metal was wrapped around a sign near the road. Not long after that another cell had developed behind me, and it quickly went tornado warned. The inflow winds were sucking up smoke and dirt from the fields into the storm creating quite a sight to see, but as for a tornado, I couldn't see so I didn't push my luck. I didn't get many pictures that day because I was playing catch up for most of it, and the HP nature of the cells made it that much tougher. Still a memorable chase, but not fruitful from a tornado standpoint. Here's a couple of photos from this uneventful chase.
I'm in the process of moving over my chase logs from the last few years, so this is the first entry of many documented chases over the years.
The first big storm chasing event took place over the last few days, with storms from Colorado to Oklahoma and everywhere in between. Although expectations were much higher for severe weather, there were a couple of good storms and the storm that was near Burlington, CO was a beauty. I didn't see any tornadoes, but there were reports of small tornadoes and land spouts in the area. What I did see was amazing structure and one of the most photogenic storms in recent memory. I started out from Oklahoma and made my way north through Garden City, KS and up through the eastern border of Colorado in flat arid country. I eventually watched this storm from initiation although I let it go because I thought there might be something better behind it. After realizing that would be the storm of the day I quickly went back after it and caught it as it matured. The rotation of the updraft was amazing and I also went through some good size hail, and called it a chase near dark. Here are some photos from that day.
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