05/13/05 Reports: IL, IN, MI, OH

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Started this thread for folks who chased in the Great Lakes region.

Did I see anything severe: NO

After some morning convection, saw a decent looking cell over southern Lake Michigan, this afternoon, on radar decided to chase it, as time went on, the cell started to weaken, there was a Severe Thunderstorm Warning for Allegan, Kalamazoo, and Van Buren counties. Drove around in southeast Allegan and northwest Kalamazoo couinties, basically saw rain, and some lightning. Another Michigan disappointing short-chase.

I went out to try and intercept the line of storms that appeared to bow out (near Jackson), placing myself in the apex. Since I am located between Pontiac and Mount Clemens, a drive to Jackson - during rush hour - is pretty far. Once I neared the apex, the thing really began to fall apart, as usual, and I was left with just heavy rain and lightning.

I'm not too unhappy - This event was actually pretty good for Michigan! :lol:
I ran out the door after a cell went up at noon right over Bolingbrook. It went severe but I let that one go since it was city bound and chasing the suburbs/city is futile. I crossed the Indiana border and sat there under a cape bullseye indicated on the mesoanalysis. The cells that were up were quickly dieing due to lack of sheer. The cells in the sheer the norther were also fairing no better because of the lack instability/moisture. Called it a bust at about 3:30 before the big squall went up to the south.
I left and played with some crap in Indiana most of the day. Got word of new storms forming in Illinois, so I headed back on I-74 into Champaign County. Saw a large shelf cloud come into view to the west, with several gust nadoes under it. Pulled off and tripoded the thing moving right at me. Got very low to the ground, making a very erie sight. Then, drove towards the large wall of dust moving towards me, and centered myself so it would over take me.

Shot some awesome video as the wall over took me...then the very high winds over took me, taking down power lines near me, as well as large trees. Then, the hail, which got to around 1" in size. Was an all around cool scene with very low rapidly moving scud/shelf cloud...hail...and very high winds driving the hail and rain...with close lightning all the while.

Then, met up with Stan Olson south of Champaign, IL and watched a breathtaking mamatus show. One of the best displays of that I've ever seen. We watched that for probably an hour or so before I left for some much needed dinner.

Kind of ironic that I drove 245 miles today...and wound up 1 mile from my house. Oh well...such is life.

EDIT...Digital photos from the post storm mammatus show...post caps of the storm tonite.

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Yeah, I headed out too yesterday. I started out near Ft. Wayne and began by heading up towards Plymouth where there was a Svr Tstrm Warn. but was quickly out of that idea when I was stuck in traffic due to an overturned semi. I then headed south towards Decatur, IN but couldn't catch up with the storm there which was moving around 45mph. Anyways, the day was mostly a bust except for the nice mammatus and shelf cloud shows. I'm sure there will be a next time.

I didn't get out until around 22Z due to work, but my roommate and I headed west. We initially were going to head for Hoopeston, IL...but decided to turn south at Pine Village, IN. After continuous discussion with Mike Kruze, we turned east at Attica in an attempt to get out ahead of the line. Unfortunately SR 28 was detoured, and we ended up on a gravel road for several miles in near-zero visibility. We stopped briefly along US 52 at the Clinton/Tippecanoe line to let the gust front overtake us. There was a lot of dust coming from the fields, but the winds weren't too impressive (35mph peak).

Heading east again, towards Frankfort, we came upon an accident. A van with two adults and their children had rolled on its left side. The driver claims a gust of wind caught him and pushed him off the road. No one was injured, but we did have to help the (rather large) mother out of the van through the back door. That delayed us 10-15 minutes, and we decided game over. Heading back to LAF, we saw a nice sunset, but I wasn't able to get any pictures. Definitely an Indiana-style chase.

Went down I-69 to Charlotte for the morning convection and saw nothing exciting, went down there again for the evening stuff and saw nothing exciting... Impressed with the Coldwater bow but there was no easy way to get over to Jackson and catch it, US127 is down to one lane so getting south takes too long these days. Did have a silo blown over by a microburst in southern Ingham Co.
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