Monday, December 28, 2009

The Christmas Blizzard of 2009

It sounded scary, but somehow Wichita ended up in the sweet spot of the storm.

To the South of us, inches of ice.
To the North of us, a foot of snow and high winds making drifts impossible to cross.
We got about 2 inches of snow here.
The sleet usually causes the power to be knocked out, but luckily, it stopped early.

What I hated about this storm were the winds. They sustained at 25-35mph with gusts going 45-55mph. I've been in big winds during storm season, but in the middle of winter, it plain sucks.

I went out hunting trash cans Thursday morning after the trashmen did their deed. Then chased a Christmas card nearly a block that blew out of my hand.

This is taken to the South (Where the wind is going . . . quickly).

I tried taking a couple of photos, but not being bundled up like the kid in "A Christmas Story"; I gave up snow photography.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

No storms to chase . . . sniff

But Fall is in effect.

Images were uploaded backwards, and I'm lazy. Start at the bottom and work up.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Monday August 17th storm

This was to the East of El Dorado. A friend called and thought he saw a wall cloud earlier. The movie is made out of several long exposure (10 seconds or more) pictures. most pics were taken in the dark, but with all the cloud to cloud lightning, illuminated the most important part of the storm.

This is the picture that really caught my attention but I never heard a warning for Butler Co.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Storms from 07/14/09

Nothing too spectacular in the storm. Most of the structure was covered by rain. I think it caused one quick warning for Sedgwick but nothing like the storm the previous week.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

070809 Wichita Large Hail Storm

It all started off with my wife saying "Wow, those clouds are pretty." Then I heard the thunder.

I was out for about an hour and a half taking lightning pics not knowing it was hailing like mad downtown. I got home as the first drops of rain hit out here in the "Sticks".

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Train vs. Tornado

Got this on e-mail. Thanks, Steve.

Train hit by a tornado earlier this year in Illinois. Apparently that tanker bouncing towards the camera was loaded with Ethylene Oxide.

Monday, June 29, 2009

as Bob Ross used to say, a happy little accident

I played with the contrast/brightness settings and accidentally got this.This was the original picture.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Winfield storm 6/16/09

I didn't go chasing due to my location to the storm, but it was beautiful.

Stayed at the perch for about thirty minutes watching it. If I could have had a beer and a whisky bar . . . heaven.

Monday, June 15, 2009

Chase Log 6/15/09

There was a moderate chance for storms today, so when I heard a barely there patch of green on the radar had issued a significant weather advisory, I grabbed the camera and was off.

Initiation was explosive as the heat of the day met with almost tropical dew points.

I stayed at the perch until they announced a tornado for Matfield Green. Seemed a strange place for the storm to produce, but I went down 254 to investigate. Fellow Ruminator Brian T. called from El Dorado and had eyes on the funnel/tornado.
I made it to El Dorado but tried some shortcuts that left me behind trees and down bad roads.

I finally got eyes on the funnel just as it roped out.

I continued towards the wall cloud as it seemed to almost detach itself and fall from the storm. Within moments another wall cloud had formed.

The rotation was fairly slow and not very well organized although I saw about 4-6 funnels try to drop from it.

It fell apart and split into a couple of wall clouds. One began to spin but just couldn't produce.

Finally with dark approaching and nothing really organizing I called it a night, and drove into a huge squall line.

By the way, if anyone sees my other Ruminations of Thunder magnet, let me know.

Friday, June 12, 2009

Anywhere but Here?

Ever get that feeling that something is avoiding you?

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

06/07/09 chase

Just me on this adventure.
Watched everything blow up everywhere but tornadic activity was a little out of reach.

There was an interesting storm blowing up south of the Oklahoma border that I decided to intercept vs. chasing east (by chasing I mean finding out that I wouldn't get to the storms until I hit Missouri).

I stopped at the Bel Plaine rest stop to figure out what the storm was doing. Unfortunately, it was dying. It looked like it might try to rebuild but had a definant rotation to it. The bottom produced a nice shelf cloud as the updraft gave up and released all the wind, rain, and hail to the earth below.

I took this about 7:30pm. The storm passed overhead and the temp dropped about 10 degrees. I stood out in it until the wind driven rain started to hurt.

More storms possible tomorrow.

Another rough day?

Sunday, June 7, 2009

Pictures after storm 6/7/09

I always find it interesting when my little town is mentioned. We're a little suburb on the highway, but twice this year I've heard the town's name called out for severe weather. I wished this came out a little better, in the clearing was blue sky with some great clouds building but I couldn't get it to come out in this.

Sounds like we're under Severe Thunderstorm Warning #3. More later . . .

Storms 6/7/09

Picture taken from the home base before the storm hit.

In play? 6/7/09

Storms are thought to initiate around 4pm.

Hot and heavy cap may keep them in place until late afternoon, then watch out.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009


Went running this evening with my nephew, Clay.

Knew the storms weren't severe so I thought I'd take him along.

There were some low hangers and scary looking clouds though. This storm was pushing severe levels but warning were canceled quickly.

I think that this tried to do something, but failed. It was fun to watch, tried to drawn in some moist air.

I don't thing the season is a complete wash. We are in a "dry spell" for tornados, but we will have to see what June brings.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Chase 5/15/09

Well NOAA said something was going to happen, and the Vector 2 people were in town. If you don't know what Vector 2 is, turn on the Weather Channel. You'll know them like a cousin in less than an hour.

I left work on time and headed home. The radar signatures looked interesting to say the least. I got home and noticed the mammatus clouds overhead. I found this strange. I'm used to seeing these after a storm, not before.

Then the sirens went off at 5pm.

We headed out West, the storm was producing something . . . too many reports gave too many different things. Unfortunately, there was a ton of rain out there.

On the highway, I took this. There was a strange lowering to the middle of the cloud base.

Things were getting progressively stranger. We stopped off at the dump and shot this:

Lightning was striking very frequently out of this storm. A lot higher average than my last several chases combined.

We went to Ridge Road as the storm was closing on in Goddard.

I believe that the center was dropping a ton of rain and hail.

We went towards Kellogg next. As I said before there was a large amount of lightning in this storm. As we got closed to Kellogg the lightning seemed to glow almost purple and growled as it struck.

They were still calling this a wall cloud when we neared Kellogg. I though it looked like it was trying to develope into a shelf cloud like another large precip. storm I picked up years ago.

When we got to Kellogg I was half expecting the aliens from Independence Day were going to be pushing through the clouds and attacking the River Festival.

I thought the clouds looked like they were holding a lot of hail, so we moved South.

The storm started to hemmhorage rain and hail and let me to belive it was dying off.

We kept going South then turned East to avoid most of it.

We ended up in Rose Hill and the sky turned to this (trust me sometimes it's easier to show the pictures than describe it:

Just a wierd, weird night although very active. The only confirmed tornado was in the Texas Panhandle.