Monday, June 22, 2009

June 17th, 2009 Chaselog

Its day like Wednesday that make us storm chasers go out. In the morning and throughout the day the threat for supercells and tornadoes didnt look all that great, but with a 5% tornado risk close to home of course we headed out. Got on the road around 10:00 heading out towards west central Minnesota with no specific target city. Throughout the day we slowly ventured south based on the RUC ending up somewhere east of Windom. Between 4:30 and 5:00 we start to notice some towers going up, so we get on the east side of them to see if they would do anything. They would go up, start to get a base and lowering, and then fall apart. They did this for about 45 minutes. Finally we notice towers going up to our east-southeast. After not really paying attention to them Rich finally broke out the binoculars and could actually see the towers getting bigger in real time. After watching the towers to our west go up and collapse one last time, we decided to race off east towards the towers that were much farther away than we thought (we were near Windom and the towers to our east would go on to be the storm that hit Austin, MN). Quickly realizing we weren't going to get to the Austin storm in time we targeted more towers going up to the north of the Austin storm. On our way east the Austin storm produced a very nice, thick anvil with a classic overshooting top. The storm that we were chasing had some of the most incredible structure I've ever seen, very nice, crisp towers. After about an hour catch up game to the storm we finally intercepted it just east of Waseca. As we were just getting to the east side of the city, we heard reports over the ham radio of a waterspout over Clear Lake which is on the north side of Waseca. After getting through the last few trees in the city we got a brief view of the waterspout. We stopped about 1/2 a mile east of the city watching the base of the storm. We saw one or two brief spinups on the ground, but unfortunately there was no condensation funnel so figuring out where it was going to touch down was difficult and made it hard to get good video or pics. We also saw a couple more brief touchdowns just to our east. All in all we got 1 waterspout and 3-4 brief spin ups under the meso. After this we step-laddered it southeast until we decided to bail and head home south of Dodge Center. The entire time we tried but could never quite completely break through the hook. Not much else to say, we didnt really see much after we started driving east from Waseca. Anyways, here's some pictures.

The incredible structure of the storm:

Structure shot with a view of the base, lots of rotation.

Not exactly sure what to call this, it had a lot of rotation so my gut tells me its a funnel, but the shape of it is so weirf that I have not idea. REALLY wish we had been able to get video or better pic of it!

Really crappy picture of the same feature but much closer and the thing is hanging right on the ground. Also lots of rotation. The last thing we really saw on the storm, spent the rest of the chase trying to get ourselves through the hook.


1 comment:

Timothy said...

Great photos Dean! Hoping for some action in Central MN on Tuesday. Were souped in with 1/4 vsb and fog here in Duluth right now 2am with a temp around 58 degrees.