Saturday, October 8, 2011

Fall Chase in SW Kansas 10/07/2011

Set out from Cordell about 1 pm for my initial target near Liberal, KS.  As I neared Liberal shortly before 5pm CDT an agitated cu field was evident SW of Turpin, OK.  I filled up with fuel in Liberal  and headed N on US 83 a few miles and pulled off on a county road intersection to observe.  Before long a storm began to form, although it took awhile.  I eventually set up at the US 83/160 junction.
Highly-sheared developing storm at 5:30 pm CDT

I followed this storm and one developing behind it as they moved quickly N at 40-45 mph to well N of Sublette and then elected to turn around and intercept a third severe-warned storm that had developed near Hugoton and was now approaching Ulysses.  This storm was moving much more slowly and as I approached I could see it had decent structure.

View to the SW at 6:48 CDT from US 160 and CR CC
The storm had a lowered area with broad rotation and before long a funnel cloud was evident.

View to the WSW at 6:50 CDT from US 160 and CR CC (Video Capture)
The funnel dissipated quickly and the storm continued to move NE at about 25 mph and developed an incredibly long beaver tail.

Panoramic View from WNW to N  at 7:03 CDT from US 160 and CR CC
The lowered area remained active, although the low-level rotation was apparently never strong enough for the storm to be tornado warned.  Another somewhat longer-lived funnel developed and for a bit I actually thought we might have a tornado, but it was not to be.

View to NNW  at 7:10 CDT from US 160 and CR CC (Video Capture)
I continued N of CR CC to the junction of CR 5 following the storm as darkness fell.  The storm was quite electrified and as a result the active area was easily visible as I observed it for 20 minutes or so.  The storm had impressive structure which would have been interesting to see in the daylight.

Lightning-illuminated base looking N at the CR CC/CR 5 Junction at 7:40 CDT (Video Capture)
Another severe-warned storm was coming up toward my position from the SW near Ulysses, so I headed W on CR 5 to take a look.  I observed some brief lowered areas in the lightning, but shortly abandoned the chase to return home.

Chase Data:
Solo Chase by Gene
Miles: 539
Tornadoes: 0  (Several funnel clouds)

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