Stormtrack: Celebrating 40-Years of Community

Jul 5, 2009
Newtown, Pennsylvania
Much gratitude and respect to Dave Hoadley, Tim Marshall and Tim Vasquez, who were much more than the founders of a publication; they founded a community, and were the pioneers of storm chasing itself.

I first subscribed to the paper ST a couple years before I started chasing in 1996. I feel so much nostalgia thinking back to the simple black-and-white publication. It legitimized the hobby while also emphasizing that it was a somewhat exclusive niche of adventurers, with the same small list of names coming up over and over. Those original chasers almost seemed famous to me. I remember I had signed up to go on my first storm chasing tour with Marty Feely’s Whirlwind Tours, one of the original tour companies. I didn’t know this guy from Adam, but felt he must have credibility because he was mentioned in ST. LOL, you wouldn’t get the same the level of assurance today just because you saw someone mentioned in social media, or quite frankly even if you saw them mentioned on here.

In the mid 90s and 2000s the WX-CHASE listserv was another popular medium. As someone mentioned above, both the ST publication and WX-CHASE relied much more on text than pictures and video. I miss both reading and writing those long narratives, which included details of every road traveled at every time of day so that you actually had an easier time recreating the event and comparing your position and sightings to others’, harder to do today even with all the information available. It’s not just the pictures and video that killed off the narratives, it’s the overall texting and social media culture.

Thanks to Steve and the crew for keeping the current iteration of ST alive. I really just can’t understand how it is that every chaser is not on here. In fact, I wish Dave Hoadley, Tim Marshall and Tim Vasquez would post more (actually Tim Marshall never does; Dave Hoadley and Tim Vasquez once in a great while). I wish all the pioneers and veterans would come back. I heard CFDG is defunct now anyway, so where are they all? Facebook and other social media platforms are just no substitute, it is just a mixed stream of chasing and non-chasing stuff, there is no organization or curation whatsoever. Let’s keep ST going another 40 years!!!!

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