2017-06-12 REPORTS: WY/CO/NE

Discussion in 'Target Area' started by Bob Schafer, Jun 13, 2017.

  1. Bob Schafer

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    Quite a day! I personally didn't see any epic tornadoes, or shoot any epic video, but I did bag 5 tornadoes, so I'm not complaining. There was some spectacular structure, for sure, too. I'm not one to give you a 23 paragraph detailed minute-by-minute recap of my whole chase, but I will say I basically started out in Cheyenne and ended up in Bridgeport NE. There were a lot of chasers out, based on what I saw on SN, but I never saw any problems with traffic. Here are a couple vidcaps from tornadoes (for me) 3 and 4:

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  2. Mike Marz

    Mike Marz EF2

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    IMG_0657.JPG IMG_0653.JPG IMG_0692.PNG IMG_0688.JPG IMG_0687.JPG IMG_0686.JPG IMG_0685.PNG WHAT A DAY! Too tired to write a full report at the moment, but will add video and write up later to this thread. That hail though.... lost some glass.
     
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    #2 Mike Marz, Jun 13, 2017
    Last edited: Jun 13, 2017
  3. Marc R. O'Leary

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    Some cell pics until I can go through the main cameras. Grover, CO. There was so much positive CG happening I didn't bother to get out and set up my tripod.

    Looking West towards Grover.
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    Some of the best mammatus I've ever witnessed. Over Pawnee National Grasslands. Originating from same storm that produced Grover Tornado.

    0612171544_Pano.jpg
     
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  4. Quincy Vagell

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    One of the best chases of my career, for the number of tornadoes, variety of structure and overcoming some challenges along the way, including leading up to the chase.

    From the start, I favored the southern target, preferably across northeastern Colorado, given the overall parameter space and somewhat better road network, but also the "tail end Charlie" potential, which tends to grab my attention the most. I stayed back in the far southwestern panhandle of Nebraska for quite some time, avoiding the swarms in Cheyenne, but also showing some restraint, to not be tempted to jump on any early cells up in Wyoming.

    I did eventually move west, but dropped south into northern Weld County, where a pair of tornado warned supercells were organizing. At first, the view was unimpressive (high cloud bases and negligible low level rotation), and I was more impressed by stiff inflow winds ahead of the storms. There was so much dust in the air (with only my sunroof open) that I had to largely remain in my vehicle with all windows closed to watch the storms develop. My contact lenses were irritated and even until late in the night, I was brushing dust out of my hair and brows. Early in the process, there was, as some mentioned, a very photogenic mammatus display as well.
    mammatus.jpg
    The pair of supercells evolved and one cell near Grover began to show significantly improved low level rotation, based on radar data and my ground visual. A wall cloud formed and lowered, and a tornado developed a short time later. I stayed with this tornado from start to finish, and the latter part of its life cycle became the most problematic.


    grover.jpg
    I rolled into the area near Hereford, to find telephone poles down and a gas line had been ruptured. I quickly got out of there, but the next 30-45 minutes was very challenging, as the alternate road network was entirely dirt and involved going a bit out of the way and encountering some mud and hail. Although my vehicle did not personally experience much hail, there was one point that I drove by what looked like at least baseball sized hail on th ground. I almost stopped for some photos, but having already lost time, I pushed on. It was also during this period that my cell coverage was virtually non-existent. I had offline maps saved in Google Maps, but without radar data, I had to entirely rely on my two eyes for observations.

    Once back north to I-80, I regained radar data and saw a cluster of supercells was lifting north-northeast. These supercells produced numerous funnel clouds and brief tornadoes. Overall for the entire chase, I saw at least three or four tornadoes, but that's not counting funnels, inconclusive lowerings and instances during which my view was obscured.

    The chase reached another high point to the north of Kimball, when I was watching a lead supercell with prominent structure, at the same time that a backend supercell produced a brief, but photogenic tornado.
    bushnell.jpg
    The tornado was relatively short-lived, but it was neat to see the whole system at once, from a distance. It's not always about being as close as possible to the tornado, plus I already had some relatively compelling tornado footage from earlier in the chase, so I stayed put.

    I did eventually move north with the supercells, but it was clear that the chase was gradually coming to an end. There was some damage near Harrisburg, including flipped over construction equipment and snapped telephone poles, but as the mesocyclone became rain-wrapped and I once again lost critical radar data (amidst a poor road network), it didn't make sense to continue the chase.
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    #4 Quincy Vagell, Jun 13, 2017
    Last edited: Jun 13, 2017
  5. Dave C

    Dave C EF1

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    Departed Denver mid morning for Cheyenne. Stopped to eat and discussed the two main areas that high res models trended: one north of Torrington, WY. in to NE panhandle, the other just SW of the CO/NE/WY border intersection. Headed just a bit north east to Lagrange, WY and stopped in a pocket of good signal to re-evaluate.

    Since 2017 has been a case of too much cap or none at all, we were very nervous about lack of CIN up north making storms messy early, although the overall tornado parameters were possibly more favorable up there. We figured cap was just about right down south and that if a line did form, we would be on the tail end. Plus, forecast CAPE was ridiculously high for NE Colorado, the 500mb energy was visible coming in as a boundary on radar, and HRRR was consistently showing a monster down there. All logic pointed south so we headed down just in time to meetup with the first beasts coming out of Fort Collins/Greeley area.

    We saw pretty much the same 3-5 tornadoes everyone else did, along with monster hail, tons of CGs, etc. Encountered some damage from the first tornado to a large shed and helped clear a road of some roof debris before catching back up to see more tornadoes. Was very surprised to see how close the three individual mesos stayed to each other on the tornado producing updrafts without merging into a mess.

    Since I focus on trying to get nice stills and cannot drive my vehicle into big hail, I tend to hang back and get wide views in most of my shots.

    Overall a great chase day.
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  6. Dan Robinson

    Dan Robinson WxLibrary Editor
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    I observed five tornadoes from the Grover, CO to Birdgeport, NE supercell. Saw two other well-defined funnels but could not confirm ground circulations due to terrain.

    Full chase log:
    http://stormhighway.com/june122017.php

    Video:

     
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    #6 Dan Robinson, Jun 13, 2017
    Last edited: Jun 19, 2017
  7. FalettiWx

    FalettiWx EF0

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    Best chase of my life so far. We saw between 8-10 tornadoes starting in Colorado, moving into Wyoming and then Nebraska. The storm itself was a meteorological marvel, having up to three cycling mesocyclones at once, all producing tornadoes. We got about a quarter mile from the Carpenter, WY tornado at the closest. In addition, we witnessed two beautiful stovepipes, an anticyclonic tornado that tore up a road construction site before we drove through, and multiple more. Not sure I'm going to top this chase anytime soon.

    Video:


    Frame grabs/stills:
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    Anticyclonic tornado:
    upload_2017-6-14_20-44-59.png
     

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    #7 FalettiWx, Jun 14, 2017
    Last edited: Jun 14, 2017
  8. Mike Marz

    Mike Marz EF2

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  9. Tony Laubach

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    A few videos from Monday, will have a full report coming soon.





     
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  10. Michael Snyder

    Supporter

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    Stayed on the north storm all day, saw the huge gorilla hail tear cars apart, and saw 4 tornadoes touch down, 3 of which we very weak. One of them dropped very close to us and it was kind of cool seeing the rotation on the ground so close. It never fully condensed however.
    The 4th and final tornado Northeast of Lingle WY was interesting as it had multi-vorticies and put on a decent show at the end of a long dead-end road. I still haven't seen anyone post any pictures of this tornado. It's Possible everyone bailed on this storm after dead-ends roads were the only option to get closer.

    A very fun chase day all in all, I just with I could have seen this Multi-vorticy Tornado a bit close, and maybe had a one of those massive teases drop a nice condensed funnel at close range. 19025355_10156207211757542_4910385571135807496_o.jpg 19055178_10156207213877542_1033543728014134789_o.jpg
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  11. kevin-palmer

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    I was on the northern storm as well. I was careful to stay ahead of the core with 4.5" hail, since I didn't want my windshield to suffer the same fate as Reed Timmer's.

    I first got a good view of the storm in Fort Laramie and watched the rotation tighten up into a funnel as the town's tornado sirens went off. There was a tornado reported at the time, but I didn't see it.



    899be3a5c9f40758beadb5f9f4da2ccb.jpg
    Funnel and Mesocyclone
    by Kevin Palmer, on Flickr

    After heading further east, the inflow winds really picked up. Visibility was very limited as I choked on dust and dodged tumbleweeds.

    485add3ad0586e79ff50f4a321942e4f.jpg
    Choking on Dust
    by Kevin Palmer, on Flickr

    Once the storm moved north of Lingle, I couldn't find any good road options to get closer.

    569ee5b7ef8a927461d1b82a34bfca68.jpg
    Lingle Wall Cloud
    by Kevin Palmer, on Flickr

    There was a tornado on the ground at this time which damaged a couple homesteads, but again I didn't see it.

    73a084b94146c90e7b75e089d2d22d1e.jpg
    Beaver Tail
    by Kevin Palmer, on Flickr

    I considered going after the cyclic supercell near Harrisburg. But I was concerned that I wouldn't get there in time or the storm would back build and cut me off. Plus I had just ended a storm chase bust at that exact location a few weeks earlier and I didn't want to repeat that. But I wish I would have tried, and I may have seen some of the photogenic tornadoes posted above.

    From a distance, that storm did produce an amazing display of mammatus near Torrington, which is where I ended my chase.

    ce618eba14a5308c6c59ad458d0b127d.jpg
    Torrington Mammatus
    by Kevin Palmer, on Flickr
     
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  12. Dan Robinson

    Dan Robinson WxLibrary Editor
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    #12 Dan Robinson, Jun 18, 2017
    Last edited: Jun 19, 2017
  13. Mike Marz

    Mike Marz EF2

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    IMG_0693.JPG Just wanted to throw a few last photos out there from this day, including a pretty crazy screen grab of the triple-meso, a beefy wall cloud, a wide-angle close up of the Carpenter, WY tornado doing damage, and a close up of the Bushnell, NE tornado shredding an old barn with power flashes. IMG_0692.JPG
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