6/21/2006 REPORTS: MI / WI / IL / IA / OH

Mar 21, 2004
Urbana, IL
I would up in northern Illinois today. Intercepted the initial cell near LaSalle, IL but that quickly turned to crap. Spent the rest of the day trying to keep up with the new batch of storms, giving up around Kankakee, IL.

While traveling east about 15 minutes west of Kankakee, IL I did see an amazing shear funnel. I pointed the camera up and filmed it as I drove along side it. I eventually pulled off to shoot video of the long white funnel cloud, only to realise I had the camera on stand by the entire time. How many times do I have to do this before I learn?? Anyway, I managed ONE picture of the funnel cloud as it roped out. The other three are just hail shafts from the storms in NE Illinois.




Left my house at 2 pm headed west on interstate 80 toward la salle peru, briefly intercepted the small cell in la salle county let that zoom on by, then sat around in mendota until the cell in bureau county formed and jetted down rt 47 while hearing skywarn spotters reporting weak rotation along the boundary just north west of dwight (verona) finally watched the updraft/hail shaft dissipate and went home........typical day in 06
What a disappointment... Left Lansing as soon as the TOR box went up. Headed down I69 to intercept the cells developing near Marshall. TOR warning for Jackson Co based on some radar rotation, but spotters there aren't very organized and it showed. Little reports came out of the area, monitoring their Skywarn net got me a bunch of "I can hear the tornado sirens here, do you?" transmissions. Was told to head east but there was no way I was going to catch them.

Waited around east of BTL as a new TOR warned cell was coming to town. Tried to check in on Calhoun Co Skywarn but no response. Searched hard to freq and all websites confirmed I was on the right one. Finally someone chimed in to say it's 147.120MHz, so I switched over and heard them talking. Checked in - no response. It uses a PL tone but I had no idea what it was. So I slowly went through all in the list before I kerchunked.

Went back and forth across I94 / I69 as reports were coming in everyone of funnel clouds. Noticed some S T R A N G E clouds south of Marshall - looked like spouts but no rotation, very small, no more than 20-30 feet in diameter. Started literally at the ground and extended up a few hundred feet. Just kind of sat there for a minute and then evaporated.

Stayed in the area as more storms were coming. Had someone call in a funnel cloud just southwest of Fredonia hall. I recognized that as a spot I just passed 30 seconds prior. So I returned to the hall and saw nothing but scud. The "trained" spotter then said the funnel cloud is still there, but it's stopped rotating. For the love of...

Anyways gave up on Calhoun Co. Went to Coldwater as more storms were coming in from the west, but they died so I took a dinner break while the next big one from SBN moved in. Headed towards Auburn IN and took US6 west from I69. Spotter reported 75mph winds near Kendallville took down some small branches. I'm guessing his estimate was off! Looked great, plenty of lightning, worth the trip by itself. Got some small hail, trailed it back into Ohio with little else of note then returned home.

Was going to stop in Jonesville (Hillsdale Co) since spotter reported tornado touchdown, but IWX had no additional info and HillCo Sheriff said they didn't find any damage anywhere so I'll chalk that one up to another well-trained spotter. And we had a trusted person check out the tornado touchdown report near Concord (Jackson Co) that prompted the first warning and all they found was a few twigs.

- Rob

PS 87.7FM is the audio for TV6 which is why you get to hear me live ;> I do radio weather for the whole lower peninsula and part of Canada (and just added Arkansas but that's probably too far to hear up here) but that's almost always taped.
Nice to get a backdoor chase that actually produced. Bill Oosterbaan and I witnessed a small, brief tornado near Auburn, Indiana, and a large, robust wall cloud shortly after. We were on our way home after chasing across lower Michigan and we decided to drop south a bit and intercept the storms that were training across northern Indiana. Our route along US 6 put us in a prime position to catch the business area of an intensifying supercell. I caught a couple spin-ups on video--not high quality, but noticeable provided you know what you're looking for. :p

Noticed some S T R A N G E clouds south of Marshall - looked like spouts but no rotation, very small, no more than 20-30 feet in diameter. Started literally at the ground and extended up a few hundred feet. Just kind of sat there for a minute and then evaporated.

I saw that happening too at different times: strands of condensation rising from the ground, sometimes appearing to connect with low-lying clouds. No rotation to them whatever, certainly nothing tornadic about them, but darned interesting to watch.
I don't recall seeing that in an LSR - where exactly was it and what kind of damage?

I looked at the storm reports when I got into work this morning and didn't see any record of a tornado in Indiana either. This was a definite spin-up, though--a couple of them, actually, but practically speaking just a single incident. There was no classic funnel, but there was unmistakeable rotation overhead, underneath which what I would call a mini-swirl of condensation rapidly materialized and then dissipated. This happened twice that I could see. I should emphasize that this was not just the low-level, strandy, scuddy stuff mentioned earlier; the condensation was wispy and thin, but its swift motion and sudden, isolated appearance beneath cloud-level rotation seemed pretty convincing.

With the action heading toward us, we moved down the road a half mile. I didn't see anything further that appeared tornadic, but the storm organized a pretty robust wall cloud soon after. We followed that east, but darkness, distance, and too many freakin' trees made it impossible to tell what was going on at that point.

I'd call this event a weak tornado. We were to the southwest of Auburn in relatively open country, not in the city. We didn't witness any damage and were too preoccupied with following the storm to check.
Chased the MI/IN line on the IN side. Started out in South Bend just as things started to initiate and the red box went up. The cells north of the IN/MI line were sev warned and we were going to head that way but then the more isolated cell in IN went warned. It was easier to catch so we got under it and followed it to Bowling Green Ohio. Met up with fellow Ohio Chaser, Caleb in Bowling Green at sunset.

We were under the cell for 4-5 hours. Most of the time in good position. It always seemed about to produce but never did. It developed rotation after dark, of course, as it rolled through OH.

Fun chase. Nice that the storm headed due east and the road headed due east. Chased through amish country. You figure that hail would hurt a horse more than a car.

Seemed to be in as good of posiotion on a good cell as circumstances would allow. So we did what we could.

I was most likely on the cell that Bob was on.

Tom Hanlon
Chased the same storm Tom Hanlon did from around 8pm till a little after dark, which gave off quite a light show after the sun was gone. Tried to keep up with it, but it was moving southeast too quickly to pursue after dark and with many large standing puddles of water on country roads. CG lightning from the next line of new storms behind the one me and Tom chased damaged a building in Bowling Green which I saw shortly after meeting up with him, and found a few streets without power and a powerline that was down due to a tree falling on it. Concrete that fell off the building also damaged a parked car. Wind downed some tree limbs in town, too. Other than that, not much damage in the area that I know of as of this moment.
Spent most of the evening yesterday on the phone with family and friends back up in Toledo...definitely a lot of water. I couldn't imagine Norman having 8.5 inches of rain as quick as they did - we are ready to float away after a little sprinkle. ;)

Lot of good pics on Channel 13's website. I had one friend up there that wanted to venture out with me provided radar support, but yeah - he hasn't chased yet so I told him to stay home. Most reports I've heard have been a lot of limbs down and of course the return of the Great Black Swamp. During one of my calls I was essentially being relayed to Ohio Highway Patrol (oh joy)...and nothing coming back was anything too terrible.

Story from the Bland with some "tornado" picture that just looks like a really low hanging wall cloud.

I was on M50 just a few miles west of Monroe. According to the reports coming out of Adrian and Tecumseh, I thought it would come right down M50 and I'd see a good show. Wound up getting a lot of rain, and a few brief wind gusts, and that was about it.

Headed south after hearing the reports of a spotter confirmed tornado near Lambertville (only a few miles south), but just got more of the same. Damage assessment determined it was straight line wind damage however (mentioned in the DISC thread). Did run into some of the flooding down near the Ohio border, a few streets and parking lots were covered with 8-12" of water. Not what I was hoping to see, but more exciting than your average SE MI day.