Wednesday 4 July 2012

Wednesday 30th May 2012 - Tx/Ks/Ok

Started the day in Norman and the SPC Had a very large Moderate Risk issued today with a large 10% Tornado risk for the Oklahoma Panhandle and SW Kansas. We left and headed west along I-40 Towards Clinton where we ate lunch. Today's forecast was a hard one due to numerous outfow boundaries and also extensive cloud cover in the Moderate Risk area. A line of Supercells erupted in the Texas Panhandle near to Childress extending northwards towards Shamrock, as we approached these there were some very strange gravity wave clouds in front of us masking the Storms and it was not until we were just 25 miles to the east of the Storms that we started to make out any structure. Now the decision was to go for these already Tornado warned cells or stick it out in the 10% Hatched Moderate Risk area. We gambled and ultimately it paid off, heading South from Shamrock along Highway 6 towards Childress it was not long until we came across a lovely little LP Supercell sitting on the Caprock.

Lovely LP Supercell sitting about 12 miles SW Of Shamrock, rotation started to pick up with this Storm but it shrivelled and died within 20 minutes of this picture!

After watching our first Supercell of the day shrivel and die we knew we had to get further south to a Pair of HP Supercells that were tornado warned near Childress. Onwards we went but our road south was blocked by this huge storm, we took evasive action to try and get down the eastern side of the storm, road options were horrendous and we had to take a route all the way to Vernon before we could get on the Southern side of the Storm, along the way dangerous Cg Lightning bolts were spitting out of the anvil, we counted at least 15 grass fires from strikes, as we approched Vernon it looked almost out of this world with thick brown smoke everywhere and a low level smoke enveloping the Town. Finally near Seymour we got South of the Storm and what a Structure greeted us, an amazing Stacked Plate Meso and HP Supercell sat in front of us, the tops on this storm were touching 65,000ft!

HP Supercell south of Seymour (Texas) with tops to 65,000ft!

We stayed with this storm until darkness trying to get some lightning shots, by now more Supercells had initiated further to the west so we would get plenty of practise.

The Supercell was crawling along at 5mph, Amazing Cg Strike under Mothership Supercell south of Seymour (Texas)

After more lightning photography we headed for Wichita Falls for the night, this was in close proximity to Dallas Fort Worth for the changeover day on Thursday, we also found out at the hotel the Moderate Risk 10% box busted so all in all our gamble paid off and we got to witness a great Supercell nowhere near a Risk zone.

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