Backyard Chasing...

Feb 8, 2004
Detroit, MI
... it shoudn't even be called "chasing". :lol:

Ever happened to you? Has your house ever get pounded with some good-looking storms?

It's happen to me more than once! I've seen numerous funnels, baseball hail, 80 mph winds, numerous wall clouds - one most recently this past June when one came over head and destroyed my camera with 60-70 mph RFD winds... all seen by my front porch.

Any storms hit your backyard recently?
My house has been hit several times by damaging winds. The biggest hail that I can recall is about penny sized (which is also the biggest hail I have every witnessed)... Also seen 1 funnel and a few wall clouds.

As far as the damaging winds - My house was hit by 80-90MPH winds several years ago during a December event, of all things (strongly forced squall line on December 6th of either 1998 or 1999). That event ripped the flag from the side of the house, and peeled half of the shingles off the roof. Also knocked some pines down (snapped them).

Another event occured quite a few years ago as well - I believe it occured in late July... That featured winds of around 90MPH, and took out more than half of the trees in our yard (large trees - one was 18-24 inches in diameter) :shock:

Thats about all...
Haven't been hit in a long time with some really good weather. :(

I think the last time we had something really interesting was about a year or even two years ago when we where hit with straight line winds measuring 75 or 80 mph I think. It was cool to watch all the tree tops bend and touch the ground.
A couple nice little derecho events, first one was 7-5 (winds about 60mph, 2 trees took out power lines in my back yard, no power for almost 18 hours :shock: ), second one was 7-14 (by the time it got to my area, winds were down to about 35-40mph). Best recent front yard event was the tornado outbreak on 11-10-02, when I bagged a little nader on a 50' chase (from the back door to the street) 8).
Hoping for a bit of weather tonight in Norman :wink:
I've had a number of events where staying put landed me in the bullseye...

We lost most of our roof and our garage was totaled in a derecho in 1993, winds about 110 MPH at the time it hit our place.

Also took softball sized hail taking out most windows and a lot of siding in a hailstorm in the early 90s, tornado touched down one mile south but was not visible due to precip core.

Took baseball sized hail and watched wall cloud pass 1/4 mile to the south in May 1998...

Lost two big trees to a dry microburst in 2002...

Closest tornado that I watched from out west at home was 4 miles away, thank goodness.

I can't say I'm fond of these events in retrospect. I hate waiting for storms to come to me. I'd rather be in my car on the side of the storm, not watching the hail shaft bowl over me. Even 10 miles out of town, like the Waverly tornado of this year, makes it feel, at least a little bit, like a chase to me. But if getting to the storm means walking to the top of the hill to see what is coming, it's too close to call it a chase :wink:
We lost most of our roof and our garage was totaled in a derecho in 1993, winds about 110 MPH at the time it hit our place.
I looooved that Storm.. July 6th 1993 I believe..
I frustratingly missed the biggest storm in my neighborhood — it was either a squall line or a microburst, and it had winds recorded at up to 109 mph, and it blew down a lot of trees and trashed a lot of stuff around my place (didn't damage many houses, fortunately), but I was stuck about 20 miles away waiting for a bus to replace the trains whose power had been knocked out by the storm — and damn it was humid — so I could get home. Grrrrr. The same storm went over my school (and interestingly, all the spiders that lived in the awning my friends and I sat under ran off before it got there), but I was in class and saw only a big board with the periodic table on it blown over.
I had a nice storm hit my backyard recently....called Alex.

I've watched so many regular thunderstorms pass through this area, it almost works like clockwork that you could tell without listening to the weather that we'd have an afternoon thunderstorm.

I really want to know some roads and good watch spots before I physically go chasing.

One good aspect of living close to the beach...once the system passes over me, I can sit on the beach and watch it wander off over the ocean :)
My front yard or down the driveway is where I do my spotting. It's where I caught my first tornado forming this last June. We usually don't get a lot of really bad storms here but occasionally we do. For the most part, the town 20 mi. west gets them and then they split at the county line and head north or south, completely passing my town.
We get quite a few gusty storms around Greenville (2 hrs away from me)
New Bern, 1 hour away from me and I am going to pick a few spots around those areas to sit and watch. It is very hard to watch storms in NC but I am determined to work with it. I'm a little more familiar with those two towns anyway, and eventually plan on working my way around picking out other hot spots too.
It's rare but it happens. A severe squall line passed by my house on june 18, 2002 during the Super Outbreak of 5 tornadoes LOL. Other than that, I've had some very good-looking storms with some monster shelfs come by.
It happened to me this past Tuesday afternoon 8-10-04. I had been watching a cell on radar for about 2 hours or so moving to the southeast from North central Arkansas, Moussori border. Left work about 6:30P as this nice looking cell was just coming into Newport. Decided to try to get to the west side of it, had to drive across town to get there. Looked to the North :roll: and saw a really large hail shaft on the way and knew I couldn't make it in time. Turned south and headed home really quickly drove into my carport just as 3/4 to 1" stones started to strip a lot of leaves off the trees along with about 60mph wind. Good choice on my part, saved a windshield. :love5:
Located where we are, just outside Amarillo, we get an excellent view of incoming storms. We got dime sized hail and a wicked looking shelf cloud today....David went out, even though he's feeling a bit under the weather, got some great hail video, among other things.

I've gotten several photos of storms, distant as Wheeler County, some as close as right over us, or just across the road. We get some good lightning around here, too.

There's something to be said for sitting on your front porch, watching a storm roll by, putting off a nice light show. :D