Friday, 25 May 2018

May 24th - report

Hello. We started the day in North Platte, Nebraska. We decided to head south into NW Kansas as various models simulated thunderstorms developing to the west, and perhaps across the area too. We had lunch in Goodland, and waited for a while, having intercepted a dust devil on the way down! We could see a line of cumulus bubbling away to our east and south-east, and this marked a wind shift line. Later runs of hi-res models showed thunderstorms developing from this so we headed east, to Colby, which was pretty much under the line. We briefly saw Berni King, before her tour van drove off and left her - for a short while!

We waited here for a while, and I Facetimed my Mum and Dad - that was around 4pm CDT. Towards 5pm, the cumulus was getting rather larger, and so we headed just a little east to get a better view, away from the truck stop. We could here thunder rumbling occasionally. This storm intensified, and so we headed eastwards, towards (but not as far as) Hoxie. We got into the back of the storm and found some hail which was around 0.5 inches in diameter. A few larger stones, to 0.75-1 inch were occasionally mixed in, but it was mainly marble-sized. We headed east and then south, towards Oakley, but stopped as the hail got quite heavy. After a while it eased, and we carried on southwards, but found some hail lying on the road, which looked cool (ha!).

We continued to Oakley, and watched the storms for a while - Lou Ruh, Ed Sweeney and partner, and Nathan Edwards showed up too, so we had a nice catch-up. Lightning was putting on a nice show, and we had a bit of a dust storm as the gust front blew through.

After a while longer we decided to head to Garden City for the night - lightning was playing along the eastern horizon, and also to the south-east, from another cell.

It was a fun chase day with some nice photo ops.

Thursday, 24 May 2018

May 24th - lunch

Hello. We've stopped in Goodland, Kansas, for lunch. Storms should develop across this area through this afternoon and evening, or move in from the west. A severe thunderstorm watch has been issued, mainly for winds, but some hail possible too.

May 23rd report


We started the day in eastern Denver, knowing that our aerial was likely to arrive at some point - we'd received the exciting news that it had got to Denver, and was out for delivery! We packed up and left the motel at 11am and drove to the previous motel, and engaged in some kind of stake out, outside the hotel, waiting for the USPS delivery to arrive!

A storm then developed so we headed a few hundred yards away to get a look at it - quickly we then noticed that the status of the package had changed to 'delivered'! We legged it back, picked up the package, installed the aerial, and we were 'good to go'.

We headed NE on I-76 - our storm had developed into a weak supercell, and we got a few nice pics before it fell apart.

We continued north-east to Fort Morgan and got some lunch. We then noticed a new storm or two had developed, and so we continued NE and then N to Sidney, Nebraska, and then east, briefly saying hi to Mike Olbinski in the process.

We paused at a rest area near Big Springs (after a short stop beforehand)  and saw some pretty cool structure on the storm to our NW. We continued east and then north towards Oshkosh, pausing to get further pics and some timelapse. Nathan Edwards joined us and it was great to catch-up.

He headed off, and we did too, heading east from Oshkosh. We found a nice spot overlooking Lake McCanaughy and got some shots of the storm as it moved away.

We then headed to North Platte for the night, where we met Jimmy Deguara from Australia in Applebee's, and we ate dinner together. Nathan joined us too and we had a nice catch-up and de-brief.

All in all a lovely day's chasing. And funny to think the last time we were in North Platte was 2 days before the total eclipse last August.

Here are a few pics.

Wednesday, 23 May 2018

May 23rd thoughts


It looks like our parcel is now in Denver so hopefully it'll be delivered to the hotel this morning (not the one we're in, the one we stayed in on Monday night!). Then it looks like we'll be heading towards NE Colorado/SW Nebraska. Although the higher storm potential is in western Nebraska, they may well turn into more of a line so we'll see whether we can either target the southern end of the line, or, perhaps, an isolated storm. To that end we'll probably head to Sterling and then decide from there.

Here is this year's vehicle.

May 22nd


In the end we didn't do a great deal! We picked up our Mifi internet hotspot and got that activated, and got supplies at Wal*Mart, and set the car up (so we did enough!) but we're staying in Denver again tonight, but at a different motel. We were waiting for a package to be delivered at the previous hotel but it never did - hopefully it'll arrive tomorrow morning. We need to head north or north-east tomorrow, so won't hang around too long to see if it arrives.

I had a go in the pool and hot tub, and then we went back to the same Applebee's as last night for dinner.

We did see some some lightning from a nearby storm, and a nice cloudscape from the motel - here's one from the window at the end of the corridor on the 5th floor.

Tuesday, 22 May 2018

May 22nd thoughts

Morning. Well after a a somewhat fitful night's sleep, due to the time difference, we're up and about. The Baron system has been activated and we're just awaiting a parcel to be delivered to the hotel.

A pretty messy weather pattern today with no real focusing mechanisms - it's still looking like we'll drift northwards, either to Cheyenne, or, perhaps, east of Cheyenne along the ridge. Some backed flow in SW Nebraska may help storms to organise a bit better, if they develop.



We're arrived safe and well. Got upgraded to Business Class, which was nice!

Flight was fine - a little bumpy for a time, but nothing major. Nice to lie down for a while too!

Got to the hotel which is very close to the airport - our car is a Dodge Durango again, which have proved good in the past.

We ate dinner at Applebee's, and are back to our room now. It's 2145 MDT here, which is 0445 BST! Time for bed soon! We did see some lightning from a storm 70 miles to our north-east as we drove back!

Tomorrow we need to pick up a wifi hotspot which we've bought, put some credit on it, and also (hopefully) an aerial for it will be delivered to the hotel. Then we'll decide where to head to. A chance of storms on Weds to the north - although there may be the odd storm around tomorrow too.