01 May 2013 – CHASE 2013 – DAY 1

01 May 2013 – CHASE 2013 – DAY 1 – Oklahoma and Texas

06:15 – Wake; morning chores;; pack bags

07:30 – Drop bags at Holiday Inn; return rental car

08:00 – Return to Wyngate via shuttle; eat breakfast.

08:30 – Walk to Holiday Inn; meet other chasers; do introductions and safety briefing,

10:30 – Pack vans, grab cameras and head for Wichita Falls , TX then toward Abilene.


12:50 – Rest stop then lunch 20 minutes later (just north of Wichita Falls, TX).

13:20 – Continue southwest from Wichita Falls on US277.

15:12 – stop at Munday for bathrooms, fuel, food. Continue southeast

17:15 – turn back north from Albany on US283. Storms with 55,000 foot have developed along I44 in southern OK, with the line spreading into our area. We are in a severe storm watch box.

18:00 – sky stop. We see a storm with a hard back sheared, take photos as it evolves.

20130501-135701.jpg18:30 – depart south on US283 as the cold outflow breeze of the storm invades.


Air being pulled up into the storm
Air being pulled up into the storm, near Throckmorton, TX, 01 May 2013

19:35 – we duck south, bit by bit, trying to keep out of monster (2.5-inch or larger) hail. At one point we can to the hail roar of the storm. (Hail roar is the sound of large hail hitting the ground, cars, rooftops, etc. It can sound like thunder only it can last for minutes at a time.)


20:30 – We stop west of Albany,TX, where we witness a spectacular display of spider lightning. I have embarrassing camera issues here, because I miss a control setting. Our team leader helps me figure it out, but I miss the best part of the lightning. To add insult to injury, the Storm Prediction Center indicates an unfavorable weather pattern (for storm chasers) for at least three days. I feel terribly frustrated.

Still, I captured a little bit:

Spider Lightning,
Spider Lightning, 01 May 2013, just west of Albany, TX

22:30 – We depart for our hotel after a fast food dinner at the Dairy Queen in Fort Griffin.

23:00 – We check into The Ridge Motel in Breckinridge,TX.
23:46 – turn in for the night. I’m exhausted physically and emotionally.