5/21/16 West Central Kansas Supercell and Tornadoes   Leave a comment

After a fresh start in Nebraska I drove down to Kansas around the I-70 corridor. The winds were backed in this high plains region and a decent Rockies surface low. Dew points in the low 60’s made their way up to the area I had decided on. After waiting patiently cumulus towers started initiating. Initially the main storm was enshrouded by rain. The roads at this time were pretty well saturated by the first two cells that passed through the area, yet the roads were still solid enough to proceed on with the right vehichle.

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Soon the cell started getting some visible rotation to it and I witnessed a multivortex type rotation and then a small tornado planted down (I believe another tornado was possibly ongoing in the rain).
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After the tornado spun off into the meso precipitation I changed position in order to get a better structure shot of the supercell. This is generally a good rule especially when you have storms of this magnitude. Here is a scene at a distance with a possible tornado obscured by rain.
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Here is another structure shot with an enshrouded tornado under the meso. Inflow winds at this time felt like they were 50-60mph where I was.
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This storm remained relatively slow moving if not stationary. I’m sure it produced multiple tornadoes obscured by rain. If the roads weren’t rain soaked I might have tried a different veiw but for the most part I’m satisfied with how this day went. I don’t know if there was any structural damage since it did seem to be out in the open fields.

Posted May 23, 2016 by droobx in Storms

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5/16/16 High Plains: Supercell with Tornado in the OK Panhandle   Leave a comment

I witnessed a decent tornadic supercell on 5/16/16. After chasing some relatively non-eventful storm days, I ended up making another trip down to the SW Kansas area where I was hoping the models would be correct. With the overnight storms previously leaving a relatively cool, moist boundary there was an area to the West that was showing signs of good surface heating. Sure enough some storms initiated and eventually reached severe criteria near the dryline/higher elevation of SE Colorado. I caught up with the dominate storm near Boise City, OK. Sure enough I was suprisingly pleased to see a very solid updraft even from a distance. I got to document some of this structure as well as capture a “bears cage” tornado before having to reposition to avoid the advancing hail core.
Here are the still images and video captures of the storm:


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After my reposition two of the storms had merged and ended up having two mesocyclones that were tornado warned, yet the storms had taken on a more high based nature. I believe there was a tornado documented that I missed but I did get behind the storm and had to bail out due to hail. This was an excellent storm chase in open country on the high plains.

Posted May 18, 2016 by droobx in Storms

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First tornadic storm 2016 – North Central Kansas 4/24/16   Leave a comment

I chased in North Central Kansas on 4/24/16. I woke up at a hotel in the Kansas City area. I figured I would drive West on the 36 in case storms fired closer to the Nebraska border.
I ended up seeing a storm that was tornadic North of the I-70 and the West of the 81. I initially viewed a wall cloud with a rapid inflow tail feeding into it. I videoed what may have been a tornado in the rain. I kept up with the storm and took pictures of the storm and eventually left it to pursue some more storms initiating at sunset.
After dodging a couple of hail cores I waited for the evening storms to pass and was done. It turns out this was a more eventful day for me than the 26th which was looking to have a lot of tornado potential but never produced.
First views of the storm with a possible tornado in the rain:


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Here is a contrast enhanced of what appears to be a tornado:
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Here are a couple of stills later on:



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Posted April 28, 2016 by droobx in Storms

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Wyoming Supercell: Tornadic Development After Dark   Leave a comment

Here are some video captures of what visibly looked like a decent sized tornado developing around 10pm on 6/3/15. I had been chasing this storm from it’s initial development taking pictures of a pretty decent supercell. The storm was relatively slow moving so I followed it along the 270 near Guernsey, Wy. I did see what could have been a tornado behind the meso precipitation. After darkness started to fall I remained to the south as the storm moved away. Here are a few captures of what I believe to be a tornado even though it’s hard to be a hundred percent sure with no view of ground contact:







I will post the daytime shots of the storm eventually. I had no radar data here to compare the storm to but I’m pretty sure with the inflow winds into this storm of what I was seeing.

Here are the still photos I took before the after dark tornado:
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Posted June 6, 2015 by droobx in Storms

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May 27th & 28: Texas Panhandle Tornado and Kansas Supercell   Leave a comment

After having chased a multitude of storms some with tornadic potential and others sub severe things were getting pretty frustrating. May 27th was a first for me in seeing a Texas tornado in the panhandle at that. I started out the day in Colorado and realized the strong instability was going to be right on the Tx/OK/KS border. By the time I was in the Panhandle area a large storm was already developing. After realizing there where no easy roads to approach from the north other than the 83 I could see from a distance a decent size funnel cloud. after the rain hail started wrapping around the backside I saw another funnel. I waited for the hail core to subside and figured I was going to miss stuff on the other side. After driving south over a large path of deep hail covering the road from pea size to almost baseball size. I could make out an area of rotation. stopped to view some strong rotation. A tornado developed to my East and I got to view it until rope out. I didn’t get the best view but it was sufficient. The storm turned out to be almost stationary and had strong rotation over the town of Canadian, Tx for a while. During this time it produced a couple of tornadoes of which didn’t seem to be very strong. Except when I was driving back north on the 83 there was quite a bit of tree damage including a tree that seemed to have been snapped in half and uprooted. So it’s lucky that a tornado didn’t develop over the town.
Here are some video captures of the larger tornado:
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The next day instability and sufficient shear was in place over most of the Western half of Texas up to Kansas/NE. The Liberal, KS area was out of the question due to cloud cover. I decided to drive north to see what would develop. A storm did start to develop near Leoti, KS and I ended up watching it develop visible rotation. The storm continued to develop strong areas of rotation and I even saw a nice funnel like feature coming down so I went north after yet had to turn back because a new area of rotation developed near me. The latter disappeared in the rain. The road network was good but farm roads need to be mitigated with caution.
Here is the last good rain free area of rotation before the storm became a more linear outflow storm. There may or may not be the silhouette of a cone tornado in the rain behind the rain free part. Unfortunately with a more darker lighting associated with this storm I had to increase the ISO which causes a quality loss. Here’s some favorites:
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Posted May 29, 2015 by droobx in Storms

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Colorado Tornadoes – Multiple Tornadoes on the High Plains   Leave a comment

Today was an invigorating storm chase day. After deciding I needed to avoid all of the saturation and flooding in the OK/KS/TX area I opted to venture to Colorado. While on a long drive from Shamrock, TX the sun came out and small storms started showing up in the Lamar/Sheridan Lake area. As the drive to my desired area started closing in I stuck with a storm that I believed was going to develop and produce tornadoes. It took a while to get going but I found a decent road network for keeping up with the storm. After seeing signs of rotation the storm eventually produced the first tornado which was a tiny rope tornado then it went on to produce a decent tornado. It cycled through another longer lived tornado and went on to produce a couple of brief touchdowns before the storm eventually stabilized.
Here are some video captures of the tornadoes:
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colo tornado


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The tornadoes are in order of occurance. This was a pretty amazing day storm chasing and will probably be memorable for a while.

Posted May 9, 2015 by droobx in Storms

5/6/15 Kansas Tornado – Rapid Development   Leave a comment

After making it in to the Hays, KS area and double checking the data a supercell caught my attention coming from the south. I caught up with the storm around the Ellsworth, KS exit. I just made it to view the tornado go from tendrils of condensation rapidly rising into the updraft to a fully condensed tornado. The road choice I had was poor but I managed to document a little bit of the tornado as it moved away toward Lincoln, KS.
Here’s some video stills:
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kansas tornado


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More storms are forecast the next two days and the tornadoes may not be over open farmland/countryside meaning tornado alley residents should pay close attention.

Posted May 8, 2015 by droobx in Uncategorized