Friday, November 5, 2010

"Storms That Have Been Chased:" August 3rd, 2010 What's in Wyoming?

It was dark. Highway 85 at 2 in the morning can be beautiful with stars beaming in the night sky. Just as you get to the Cheyenne Ridge bordering Colorado and Wyoming, you start to eye out the wind generators along the ridge. Eventually I spotted some close to the highway, and Cheyenne began to beam in the distance with its city lights. I drove into town where a friend of mine works at the NWS, where Shep and I gathered to do some forecasting for the next day. We watched a massive historical flood that hit Cheyenne back in the day. Pretty astonishing to see it on tape.
Driving back to the apartment to get some rest before leaving for Wyoming, we slept in just a little too late. We left around 9ish, when we needed an earlier start to this potential tornado target. My eyes focused on northern Wyoming near I-90 close to the SD border. On our way, we were excited to be out and about on a chase close to home.

Driving north I-25 north of Cheyenne, WY, storms began to brew off the mountains, due to the storms already severe up north at our target area for tornadoes, we both took interest in what we had in a timely fashion. Some evaportrasporation made for a nice base in the mountains and continued proprogating toward the town of Douglas. We continued on north on highway 59. As we edge closer to our target area, the skies were clearing and it was becoming clear that the supercell of the day moving through the Rapid City, SD area was way too far ahead of us.
We stopped driving north and had lunch at Subway in a very small town called Wright. There we laughed at a motel sign that I put up on Facebook...good moment.

We tracked back south to go east to salvage anything that may develop from outflow northeast of us. Beautiful undulated cumulus skies were left as the boundary moved eastward.

Bust in the area made us turn back south to Cheyenne. We drove south watching on
radar another skim of cells turning severe southwest of Lusk, WY. This would be where we pulled off on a random dirt road that would lead us to many amazing areas of Wyoming. Our goal at this point would be to catch lightning on any storms that would give a chance to do so. Beautiful countryside indeed along with scorched trees from recent fires made for awesome photo opportunity.

After driving wherever the road went, we made our way to Wheaton. Nighttime was by far the most amazing part of the whole trip. Convection off the mountains led to amazing stritation formation lit up by lightning flashes. Cloud to ground strikes lit up very close to where we watched the whole storm pass over us.

These next two shots were the closest CG's I've ever captured on film.

This equaled awesomeness! This by far was a great chase with Ryan Shepard. We both enjoyed the experience of Wyoming as a whole. Even though we didn't grab those naders in northern Wyoming, it was comforting to know it was in our target area. Timing was earlier than expected.
Radar Archives:

This radar image shows the mini tornadic sups producing the first tornadoes of the day in Northern Wyoming.

This shows the Bow Echo forming off the mountains west of Wheaton, Wyoming.
IR Satellite:

This was the early morning tornadic cell in northern Wyoming producing 2 tornadoes.

Dominating Supercell blowing through South Dakota



Dann Cianca said...

You've got a couple great photos in there, man. Love that first supercell pic and the windmill one later.

Ryan Shepard said...

That was a fun day, awesome forecasting!