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Mike Hollingshead

Not sure what was more crazy the storm or ST managing to never have a forecast thread or a now thread for the day lol. It just seemed impossible to get a good day and a good storm with neither thread happening on ST. I mean seriously, pretty hard to remember such a day. Pretty impressive parameters up there yesterday too. Siggy tor was 7 last I saw before the storm. Not a complaint either(obviously), just simply an observation of something that was different.

Will just copy from my site. It will be a while before any real account is done. Pictures just won't tell the tale. A whole lot more variations of this thing were caught on video. Thing was a supercell from north of Kadoka through at least southeast of Kimball. I sure was not thinking using I90 the whole time would work out as well as it was. The thing even curled out later and turned ene to east, made me wish I'd kept going east rather than letting it get me.



Chased this thing from birth out nw of Murdo SD through Kimball SD, often with Chris Allington and Evan Ludes. One of the most beasty storms I've chased. Problem was it was moving so fast. It was doing crazy things with new updraft bases forming ahead of the base of this one. Those would get a wicked inflow cloud attached to them, then just all suck into the one behind it and get crazy structure. At one point the one had a crazy curling mid-level inflow band...but the thing was purely convective. Just an "oh my god" deal.

Near Vivian it got a ground blasting rotating on the ground deal. It looked like a simply crazy tornado was forming as that thing blasted the Earth. Looks like a tornado report came of that. The lightning was just silly, especially right here at Chamberlain in the above. And just crazy long smoothed bands going into the thing. Chris was saying softballs were bouncing over their car back there in the vault just before this, as they drove down some gravel road trying to get back to I90. I'm dying for massive hail, don't care how scary or bad it gets. Since he said it was in the vault I thought I could get some and still escape east for structure. Sure enough I soon got hail out here. I sat and it never got big and turned to rain.

I go to flee here and don't see the entrance onto I90 here was a loop deal. I turn back around wondering how you get back on I90 as the core comes into Chamberlain. Extreme rain! Holy crap was this crazy. I jump on I90 to zero traffic going east and wind blown rain rocketing east. I'm going east at about 60 and can't see a thing, but it was crazy, the winds had to have been going east 60mph perfectly with me. It was like super duper saturating rain fall rates were happening but nothing coming down here, just blowing sideways at the same speed as I was moving. It just doesn't make much of any sound on your car like this and it's just a strange sensation, as it is like a crazy amout of dense rain floating east envloping you in a cloud.

After I cleared the rain and raced east to get ahead more, again there was NO traffic going east on I90 with me. For a long ways. I thought this seems like an episode of twilight zone. I let it overtake me se of Kimbal, partly because it looked like a line was forming on radar around it, partly I needed gas, and partly I thought I might be able to take max hail sizes still before it lines out. Only got about quarters there trying to position myself where it should be the worst just n of the base a bit. I then chased mammatus through the evening.

Anyway, I already know I couldn't get stills of all the best stuff but got it all on video. Crazy storm. It's going to be a "blast" trying to whittle this into the already jammed backed and whittled down DVD. The coloring at times on this thing was ridiculous too.




I just about didn't stop at Mitchell but am glad I did. Late twilight on the mammatus made them crazy above this field lit some by lights. I had a clear view of them at sunset but as I drove east more I kept getting the low cloud block out crap. Each time I'd get a gap they'd look nuts above me. I'd go to stop at the next exit and I'd hit clouds again. I thought I'd get clouds again at Mitchell but tried anyway. Took like 7 seconds or so at 800-1250 ISO to get these to show up, at F4.
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Great shots, Mike!

My girlfriend and I decided to chase at the last minute and left Kansas City at noon. We took I-29 north to I-90 west at Sioux Falls and then dropped south somewhere east of Chamberlin to intercept the beast. We saw a tower exploding on the southern flank of that storm and knew we had to get to it but it matured extremely fast and dropped three tornadoes while we were still about 20 miles away, luckily the terrain was relatively flat and we were able to observe all three.

This shot is of the first storm (the beast) as we were going west to drop south to the tornadic storm. This was my first picture of the day and I somehow managed to get a lightning bolt while hanging out the window.

I had a great chase yesterday in central South Dakota. I first caught up to the storm near Reliance, SD. Then ended up running south down highway 47 to stay away from the hail. Near the intersection of highways 47 and 44 I caught 2 tornadoes. Here are some still shots until I can get the video up.





Chased the supercell from NW of Murdo until Yankton where we had dinner and dropped south for home. Probably the funnest points where in the vault SE of Vivian. We ended up with some poor road options and didn't think we'd be able to beat it back up to the interstate. No warning stones... just sporadic stones from golfball all the way up to softball. Got a dent the size of my fist on the hood that I will try to get a pic of later... miraculous that we didn't lose any glass as we spent a solid 15 minutes on crappy roads trying to get back to the interstate. The other one was shooting the structure with anvil CG after anvil CG pounding away.

Since Mike posted the pictures of the best part of the structure, I'll post some from other parts of the day... first a couple little 'funnels' as the first RFD cut organizes NW of Murdo:


Pretty amazing lighting and coloring just south of Kimball, SD:



The storm gusts out near Aurora Center, SD:

I hung out north of Plankinton, SD keeping an eye on echo tops on the ABR and FSD radar completely ignoring Rapid City. Finally decided to get west. Met up with the storm west of Reliance. Strong inflow, lots of CG but was too far away to really see the base (I really wanted to keep a good distance from the core after those reports came in). Tornado warning came out saying the storm was moving at 50 mph (how the hell does this happen in July?!?). Wanted to get east of the river before trying to intercept again. Realized I should probably get gas I booked it Kimball and then headed south. Let the storm come to me on a gravel road out there. Got eaten up by the rain/hail (the hail was much smaller by this time). That was pretty much the end of the chase. The road network out there SUCKS, but I guess there's no point in having more roads if no one lives out there. My best four, timelapse will be done sometime tonight. Also, congrats to everyone who bagged a tor yesterday! Great pics guys! I think I was on the wrong side of the storm for that insane structure.

I can't confirm anything touched down here as there was just enough elevation between me and the storm for me to see the ground, but there sure was a lot of stuff going on in this area:


And on the way home
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Chris e-mailed that to me earlier. Really wish I had gotten in some of that, damn it. Sucks cause you go looking for that stuff and you will surely miss too much good stuff while finding just quarters on storms instead.

Look how big that sucker is!


Around Vivian was when it had the massive east-west freakish tall convective beaver tail. Guess 7 inch diameter stones deserve freakish structure lol.
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Had no intention of chasing Friday since I had been working all night but made it to Sioux Falls and headed out with Marcus, Joe & Greg.

We headed to a Chamberlin/Huron target down I-90 and eventually came up on the mother storm, lots of rain and 1.5ish hail. The sun was coming thru real well causing a "White Out" in summer, wicked.

We booked south to check out the cell that had popped up south of the main storm, we had alot of technical difficulties that day so we were mainly on visual. The storm was spinning nicely many times (As seen in the timelapse in my video) however took it's sweet time to produce. Thanks for Greg's alert eye (and a TON of luck) we did catch the Tornado near Herrick, SD. We did not see it disapate as we were running from the main storm sitting between the two.




Some of this video is a timelapse where noted.

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