Skywarn Spotter? Ever asked if you're a storm chaser from the decals on your car?

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Jan 12, 2009
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Southbury, Connecticut
Being a Skywarn spotter can be interesting, especially if you have the Skywarn logos on your vehicle. People tend to ask the most interesting questions. If you've had these kinds of experiences, whether it's on the road or at the gas station, tell them here!
 
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Reactions: Alex B
Jan 12, 2009
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Southbury, Connecticut
So. Even though I started this thread, I suppose I'll introduce one weird conversation I had with a person. I was coming out from Ritz Camera and a lady approached me once I got to my truck. She noticed the decals I have on it as well as the make shift rigged weather stations. Immediately she asked if I was tracking anything. . . but it was a perfectly calm and clear day. In any regard I replied to her with a simple no and explained to her that I am an atmospheric science student with a passion for severe storms, filming, photography and research.

Yes . . . I know, not that interesting of a story. But it's still funny to someone like me!
 

Jesse Risley

Staff member
Apr 12, 2006
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Macomb, IL
www.tornadoguys.com
I don't have stickers, just a few antennas, but it seems like every chaser convergence or pit stop for gas strikes up a conversation with the locals about nader chasing.

If you really, really want to pick up chicks, you need a lightbar as opposed to just those Skywarn stickers.:D
 
Dec 8, 2003
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Calera, AL
If you really, really want to pick up chicks, you need a lightbar as opposed to just those Skywarn stickers.:D
Dang, so that's what I've been doing wrong. :D

The only decals I ever put on my vehicles were ones I made of the plotting symbols for a cumulonimbus and thunderstorm. They were inconspicuous so that only anyone with a deep interest in weather an meteorology would have known what they represented. I guess I've never been one to advertise my presence while out chasing or spotting.
 

Jason Boggs

Since I have a local TV station sticker on my Xterra, I always get locals asking me about the weather when I'm out.
 
Sep 25, 2006
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Minneapolis, MN
There've been a couple times, not on my car but on people's car who I'm chasing with. Nothing real funny, just farmer Joe coming out to look at the scary looking clouds instead of going to the basement during the tornado warning.

Actually, there was a guy down in Missouri on June 7th this year who made for a pretty funny moment. Just imagine Larry the Cable Guy but not talking like that on purpose.
 
May 1, 2004
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Springfield, IL
www.skip.cc


The acrylic dome I'm using for a video camera enclosure always gets the locals going. On June 6 in Nebraska there was one bearded character at a gas station staring at it for a minute. He finally came up and asked, "You really think that thing is gonna save your life?" Hilarious.
 
Nov 18, 2006
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Chicago, IL
Ive gotten approached many times but nothing off the wall.

Usually they just ask where to go to stay safe and I tell them not to follow me.

A more interesting encounter I had was on June 5th in Nebraska with a local...one who appeared quite intoxicating.

He asked me what way the storm was moving and I said SE and that set him off.

"SEE!!! Will you tell them lying sons a b**ches at the NWS that this s**t ALWAYS comes from the northwest...not the soutwest like they be always saying" I didnt feel like going into the technics of it, but it was pretty funny.
 
Mar 2, 2004
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Wichita, KS
www.facebook.com
My favorites are always the locals who have lived there for 30 years and come up and make chat with you about chasing, then say something along the lines of "its too *insert excuse here* for tornadoes"...

I always wish I can run into them later in the day after several tornadoes have touched down. The first, most memorable of these was the Cactus/Tulia day where someone said it was too cold for tornadoes that afternoon. Obviously that was not the case...

And this season, some guy in a church parking lot (my chosen accent to talk to this church goer was a story all on its own) mentioned how there wouldn't be any tornadoes saying the lack of a dryline and cold front were the main reasons. He forgot warm front, and several tornadoes touched down near the warm front.

Those are just my faves... :)
 

jeremy wilson

Had a gent come up to me this year about a mile from where the pig farm tornados in Oklahoma touched down in 2008. He told me and Jay Brock we were "in the wrong spot to see naders, they just didn't happen in these neck of the woods". I asked him when the last time one touched down around there and he said " we had three last year right over there". I guess they get so many up there that it's not a big deal when you have an outbreak the previous year!
 

Mike Hollingshead

I don't have stickers, just a few antennas, but it seems like every chaser convergence or pit stop for gas strikes up a conversation with the locals about nader chasing.

If you really, really want to pick up chicks, you need a lightbar as opposed to just those Skywarn stickers.:D
This all reminds me of the funny on my last chase while sitting in Valentine. It's a long story(I've never been invited to a party on a chase before lol...should have went). This girl was talking to me, after coming over because her friend thought she knew me. She didn't but the girl stayed there and kept talking and asked what I was doing there. So I explained. She then says that a chaser almost ran into her the other day. Then she says, "They need flashing lights or something." During the conversation she actually mentioned them needing flashing lights twice. I thought it was funny. I was like, yes, yes they do. That or just not about run into people in the first place.
 
Jan 7, 2008
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Bradleyville,MO
It always funny people asking you, "how much does it pay," to spot/chase!!You get to hear all there tornado and hail stories some are interesting.Seem like everyone wants there own personal forecast like are we going to have a tornado here.
 

D. Hayes

Since I'm active duty USAF I always get asked if I'm in the weather squadron from the security forces at the base gate and if the Air Force paid for my truck. I wish!

Thing is I rarely ever use the Skywarn magnets since I had one blow off and I don't use stickers. But I do gets lots of people asking me questions. A few week ago one morning at Lowe's I was loading the truck up with lumber and several people came up to me asking stuff like..., "Did you get to see the tornado up in Nebraska last night?" or they inform me of where a tornado was and then act like they are smart . Dumbest ones are "Is there a storm coming?" When I have all my radios on and radar displays up.

Course the look of my truck don't exactly help either.

http://www.impact9.com/gallery/albums/userpics/storm7_[640x480].JPG
 
Dec 9, 2003
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Colorado Springs, CO
Don't have the Skywarn stickers on my vehicle, but with a couple antennas for ham, a nice parking spot on the side of the road, and a camera pointed out your window......it's amazing how many people you can slow down if they don't have a radar detector :)
 
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Apr 22, 2009
230
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preferrably near a storm
Being my first season chasing I didn't have any decals on my car...just my laptop and my scanner radio. Hence I didn't have any real crazy encounters, but on the days I was leaving to chase, I did have my co-workers looking at me in a forelorn and foreboding way, emploring me to 'stay safe', and 'hope to see you Monday'...as if I was going into something like an F5! I was LOL at this inside, of course knew their hearts were in the right place, and I was careful on every chase (hence have lived to tell the tales).
 
Dec 18, 2003
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Lubbock, TX
daviddrummond.com
The ones that never fail to amaze me. I have in big letters 11 with an NBC logo and FIRST ALERT STORM CHASER and they come up and ask if I am a storm chaser? English reading as a second language I guess.

Not as amazing though as the ones that see me in it, ask me where the tornadoes are when it's December and 30F outside and spitting snow.
 

Jason Boggs

Or when you're out watching a big *ss storm chugging your direction and someone pulls up and says "are there going to be any storms today?"
 
Jan 12, 2009
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Southbury, Connecticut
Since I'm active duty USAF I always get asked if I'm in the weather squadron from the security forces at the base gate and if the Air Force paid for my truck. I wish!

Thing is I rarely ever use the Skywarn magnets since I had one blow off and I don't use stickers. But I do gets lots of people asking me questions. A few week ago one morning at Lowe's I was loading the truck up with lumber and several people came up to me asking stuff like..., "Did you get to see the tornado up in Nebraska last night?" or they inform me of where a tornado was and then act like they are smart . Dumbest ones are "Is there a storm coming?" When I have all my radios on and radar displays up.

Course the look of my truck don't exactly help either.

http://www.impact9.com/gallery/albums/userpics/storm7_[640x480].JPG
Ha! Yes, I'm frequently asked if there is a storm coming too when people see my rigged up truck. Then again, you don't see vehicles around in Connecticut set up with anemometers on it. I kind of enjoy when people come up to me and get excited. On occasion I visit my old science teacher from Elementary school and when the little kids see my truck they go NUTS! I let them look at my Kestrel 4000 and they were all fighting over it.

Aaah. That's how I used to be when I was their age. Hell, I still am!
 
Jan 12, 2009
40
1
0
32
Southbury, Connecticut
The ones that never fail to amaze me. I have in big letters 11 with an NBC logo and FIRST ALERT STORM CHASER and they come up and ask if I am a storm chaser? English reading as a second language I guess.

Not as amazing though as the ones that see me in it, ask me where the tornadoes are when it's December and 30F outside and spitting snow.
Random guy on the street: Hey dar, u evah seen one dem snow twistas? Hear dem sucka's elusive.
 

Justin Roberts

I don't display any stickers or have any flashy LEDs but my car looks like a porcupine with the antennas. I still have people come up to me and ask if I am a storm chaser or what the weather is going to do. I went thru the Sonic drive-thru in Topeka one time and had my laptop open with GR3 going and the girl asked if I was a storm chaser. I made the mistake of saying "I suppose so" and had the entire crew of Sonic workers of the North Topeka Sonic crowding their head thru the drive thru window to ask me questions and look inside my car.