Well I made it back from western Kansas in one piece and what an active night it turned out to be. I learned something on my trek across the Sunflower state; storm chasing teaches patience.
I didn't leave Wichita until 1 p.m. Wednesday afternoon and I arrived at my stopping place, Garden City, at about 4:45 p.m. SatCam 12 has some great tools on board and I was able to do an analysis of the weather setup in Garden City. I waited there for about an hour before deciding to move further west toward Lakin. Now I'm 230 miles from home thinking to myself "I better see something or my co-workers will give me a bunch of grief tomorrow".
I was 15 - 20 miles north of Lakin when I spotted the tornado to my west, near the Hamilton/Greeley county line. That's the one you may have seen live from SatCam, but I have to say, it looked much more impressive in person than through a camera. I followed that storm for almost 2 hours and it did produce other ropelike tornadoes. It was dark by that time, so video from SatCam would not have been impressive. I did have access to Doppler radar from SatCam, so I used that as my guide once the sun had finally set. Chasing at night can be very dangerous and I don't recommend it if you don't have radar available to you.
The storm north of Goodland produced a large tornado, but fortunately no major damage was reported. My night ended at 2 a.m. at the family ranch in southern Ellsworth county.
By the way, dogs make great storm chasing partners. I'll explain why in another posting. Have a great day.
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