6/28/2006 REPORTS: WI / IN / MI / OH

Well I had the opportunity for a brief local chase here just on a severe thunderstorm though. At about 5:50 pm I realized that a severe storm in Southeast Dodge County would push southeast into Waukesha County and there would be a good chance I could get to it while it was still severe. So, I hopped in the car quickly so I could intercept, leaving the camera behind because the thing was massive and I was expecting to punch into it anyways (turns out there wasn't much to photograph anyways).

I quickly hopped on I-94 and headed west getting out to the first Waukesha exits around 6:10 pm. Well in the distance loomed very dark skies and nice vivid CG lighting up the horizon. I caught up to the storm as I approached the Highway 83 exit in Delafield. I got off here because the winds really picked up as the front edge of the storm pushed through and the downpours started. If I would have kept going west I would have picked up some hail. Nevertheless I had gusts 40-50 mph with a couple up to around 60 mph. I initially sat in a parking lot for a couple of minutes while I got buffeted by winds and the sheets of rain. Ponding of water occurred real quick, there were some areas where when you drove through it was halfway up the tire. I decided to head west further on Milwaukee Street which heads over to the city of Delafield and past Nagawicka Lake. As I got to the lake, I looked to my right and there were pretty big waves on the lake for it being an inland lake...some whitecapping. All along Milwaukee Street from 83 to Delafield there were a lot of small branches down with the winds still gusting. The biggest one I could find was a big limb probably 4-5 inches in diameter and 10-15 feet in length that blew down on the other side of the road on the south side of Nagawicka Lake. By the time I got to Delafield the winds had subsided but it was still raining really hard. So I headed back and confirmed my observations on the damage. Then I headed back home.
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Very interesting storm system. We were talking about this all day in spotters class and the storm finally showed up about 5:30 or so. Chased some local severe warned storms here in Bartholomew Co, IN. containing some dime size hail and a whole bunch of lightning no damage reported around here. Quick/fun chase with new information that I have lerned.


Forget about tornadoes for a while. Despite the complaints about 2006's tornado season, this is becoming one of the better lightning years in recent memory. Looking at everyone's shots this year certainly confirms it. Cooperation from lightning is well above average this year, so if you've slacked off on your lightning photography due to past frustrations, it might be the time to get back out again - the getting is good now!

Last evening I went on a nice relaxing chase about 45 minutes north of town to find this nice gem of a storm moving across the Ohio River. Lots of CGs in and around sunset-accented rain shafts right at twilight. This is the type of storm that you see the great lightning in it as you are trying to find a spot to set up, but you know it's going to be over by the time you stop and get the camera on it. Well, this one actually kept going after the cameras were on. Like I said, 2006 is treating us lightning people better for some reason!


The first five video grabs on the page are from one discharge that I also caught on a 35mm slide. Yes, I actually got around to shooting a lightning slide for once this year! It was a beauty and I had the shutter open when this flashed, we'll see how it comes out when I can get the slides developed.