Dan Robinson

I just finished a 400-mile chase to east-central Ohio along the I-70 corridor and was blessed with a very enjoyable evening. The WxWorx system got me right in the heart of a dying cell that suddenly intensified for 15 minutes right above me. I experienced a barrage of close CGs as well as plenty of beautiful, intense lightning. I filmed with two video cameras (one dash-mounted) and actually got to shoot 35mm lightning slides for the first time this season. Raindrops on the lens might have affected some of the slide shots but I know I got a few nice bolts on film.

Here is some video:

RealVideo, 9.5MB

Frame grabs:


My location was along I-70 in Fairview, Ohio, about 20 miles west of Wheeling, West Virginia and about 15 miles east of I-77. I have to hand it to WxWorx for its role in tonight's success, what a great thing it is to have live radar and lightning data 24-7!

Nice pics Dan! I wanted to head up north to do some chasing (or even just observing!) but work and homework kept me home :evil: Oh well, storm season is only beginning!
things in our neck of the woods may get interesting come mid-week. I'm keeping a close eye on how that front develops over the next couple days.
Better late than never, here's a rundown of our chase Saturday into IA.

Mike Kruze and I had been watching the evolution of the forecasts for this system all week, and Friday night, we decided that southeast Iowa in late afternoon/early evening would be a good target to start for. Saturday morning, we got up early and found that the best target area had shifted to the northwest, a considerable drive from West Lafayette. After some debate, and staring at the models, we decided to head out anyway. As we got ont he raod, we looked at RUC forecasts and decided to make for Ft. Dodge, IA.

Following a very long drive (which included things like: killer farm equipment, random calculus problems, and random deer attacks), we arrived in Ft. Dodge, to find a hoard of chasers already assembled. We kicked around there for a while, waiting for something to happen. SPC mesoanalysis said the cap had broken (as the RUC said it would), but we didn't see any evidence of it. As the warm front passed, we began to lose hope. Shortly after 7, precip began to fire to the north, along the IA/MN border and we went after it.

The lightning show was spectacular as we reached the northern part of Iowa. We got off on Exit 208 (off of I-35), to try and get some good views of lightning. Before long, though, things began to pick up. We ended up in Manly, where I put on my hail goggles (forgot the helmet, unfortunately 8) ) Our nowcaster, Kevin Peters, directed us west to get the better action, which would involve us core sideswiping a storm. In his judgement , it was a safe course, and so we took it. Light rain and 1/2" hail fell on us for a few minutes but that was it. 10 minutes later, there was a tornado warning.

We found a place off to pull off just the other(west)side of 35. We were watching a cell move in from the south when I turned to the north and spotted what appeared to be a distinct lowering. After observing it for a few minutes, we realized it was indeed a spectaular lower and decided to follow. Kevin was concerned about the cell to our south, but as we moved east, it became a non-factor. We followed that northern cell, a few miles to the south for almost 45 minutes, until it began to die off. Although there were tornado warnings out the wazoo for it, I never saw any tornadoes. I'm fairly convinced that there weren't any.

By the time we were done, it was after midnight, and we headed to Waterloo to get a hotel room. We wanted to chase Sunday, but with the target area being further west, and us having to be in class early Monday morning, that didn't work out so well for us. All in all, though, it was absolutely worth it.

Pics and detailed log to follow in the next few days. I'll post the link here.

Better late than never.

I dropped off a roll of film back in late April from of some lightning and general thunderstorms during that month. I didn't think I really got anything good, and so I eventually forgot about it. I finally got around to picking up the slides this Monday, and to my surprise a few shots turned out OK. I ordered some hires scans from the lab, they were just FTP'd to me today so I could post them remotely from here in the Plains.

Lightning in Fairview, Ohio on April 17 - Shot looking south from I-70 just west of Wheeling, WV into eastern Ohio:


Double rainbow in Greenbrier County, WV after storms sometime in late April: