May 19, 2010 west central Oklahoma tornadoes
Got to a hotel room in Oklahoma city at 3:30am after chasing the previous day in the Oklahoma Panhandle. Woke up around 11am and got some Chick Fil-a before departing west. Morning convection had laid out an outflow boundary, so our target was pretty straight forward, get to the Dryline/warm front/outflow boundary intersection. Towering Cumulus went up along the dryline, storms took a while to get going, but finally something was showing up on Radar and we followed. We found I nice hill with a view of the updraft base from about 20 miles away, we figured the storm needed more time to organize and by the time it got to us it would be close to producing. We set up some lawn chairs and watched the storm. It had a nice wall cloud so we got the video camera out just in case. It ended up producing only a few minutes after we set up our chairs. So today I set a few new records, first tornado seen while sitting in a lawn chair, longest distance chase, and craziest chaser convergence ever. Anyway, here is the first tornado. (we also have a timelapse video of this tornado that I'll post later)
A smaller example of the chaser convergence, it got WAY worse later in the day.
Now a storm to the south was trying to merge with our storm so we had to wait for reorganization of the storm. We had a river crossing coming up and since we knew the storm wouldn't do anything for a while we got into position by going south out of the storm 10 miles to cross the river at Thomas and get NE ahead of it. Had some beautiful structure once we got back on it.
Our road Options got a little screwed up so we couldn't get ahead of it quite yet. Had to punch through the RFD and get east ahead of it.
Finally getting ahead of it here...
First we thought the storm was gusting out, it was definitely outflow dominant. Starts to wrap up on the north side of the RFD here, and produced a short lived tornado seen here... Also have video of this.
Almost looks like a wedge back behind the RFD on the right side there, probably wasn't though since no one else from the SW side saw it.
About two minutes later we are pulled over and taking pictures of structure when a tornado touches down across the RFD, pretty good example of a rain wrapped tornado, had there been heavier precip falling in the rear flank downdraft, this tornado would have been invisible until its right on you.
I love powerlines. As you can see they are in almost all the shots. Sarcasm here obviously.
Large tornado underneath incredible structure! what more could one ask for!!?!?
Hmm how about a golden wheat field foreground? Check.
We continued to follow this storm all the way past Guthrie, OK to just south of Meridian in the forest of eastern Oklahoma. Gave up after we couldn't find a view in the forest. Had to core the storm to get back to the interstate, but we were surprised to only find penny sized hail. Got gas in Guthrie and started heading home. Near Perry Mammatus were starting to get crazy so we got of the interstate to take a few pictures.
Then we had a nice 7 hour drive home, after seeing 5 tornadoes on a two day chase trip, it was a high spirits drive back lol. A few good days now this year and 10 tornadoes already, its not even June! Hopefully we'll get some nice Nebraska storms here in June.