The Storm Prediction Center has issued a high risk for today for the heart of Oklahoma. Southern Kansas is also in the target area. Wind profiles today are insane, and those and other parameters suggest a tornado outbreak is possible. So I am feeling a mix of dread and excitement … dread for those who live here, and excitement (and anxiety) about the chase. The storms are likely to be moving at scary speeds, so it will be a challenge.
In favor of getting a few hours of sleep, I didn’t post pix from yesterday – May 23 – which was a wonderful chase day. I saw a slim tornado, hail, flooding, a gorgeous structured storm, and lightning.
I hope everyone has their weather radios on today. Heed warnings.
End of day update: Ugh! The storm we targeted in northwest Oklahoma produced a beautiful, huge tornado over a lake – shortly before or about the time we got to it. Unfortunately, terrible visibility and bad timing meant we didn’t see it. Two of our party went into the precip core to see a subsequent rope tornado, but I didn’t, and the rain obscured it. And then I was caught behind the line of storms as they screamed east at highway speeds, dropping massive and destructive tornadoes in some cases, often wrapped in rain and invisible. Some chasers “saw” but didn’t see these wedges; at least one friend nearly was killed by one. In a way, I’m glad I didn’t get aggressive and try to punch that line, but I’m disappointed I didn’t see more of this historic outbreak, and I am saddened at all of the destruction and loss of life. This has been a terrible year for tornado deaths.