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chasing hot spots

how many people find weird coincidences where you go to a particular town or spot to chase anywhere in the plains or midwest and you seem to stumble across a storm? for example.......ive been to pratt kansas while chasing for 3 years and each of those 3 years anytime i would end up in pratt kansas during a chase i would see a tornado or a supercell, another such area for me is el paso illinois any time i end up in that particular spot during a chase i run across a lucky day for weather......i was just wondering if im totally pyscho or some of you have weird coincidences when chasing that u always end up in the same spot just as something good happens???/
 
Hotspot- Throckmorton & Haskell Counties Texas. General area from Jayton to Aspermont to Throckmorton seems to get these HP BEASTS!

Not so hotspot- Wichita Falls Texas. Since 1979 no Major tornadoes anywhere hear here and since the early 1990s has been in an almost curse like drought. I am convinced our local Meteorologist who has been around since the early 80s at least has sold his soul to Satan sometime in the early 90s in order to be the head honcho weatherman here. In return it cant rain over 14 inches per year here anymore. ;-p

Im kidding so please no emails. :rolleyes:
 
I second the Throckmorton county nomination. In 2003 it seemed that everytime I turned around they were under a tornado warning...of which many were verified. Whenever we didn't know where to go we just went to Haskell!
 
I second the Throckmorton county nomination. In 2003 it seemed that everytime I turned around they were under a tornado warning...of which many were verified. Whenever we didn't know where to go we just went to Haskell!
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Having worked in the Abilene TV market for several years, Throckmorton appeared to be the tornado capitol of Texas.....lots of Tornado Warnings. During the late 90s, Haskell county received its share of tornado warnings, but few reports.
 
I seem to favor these 3 spots as places I can count on...one is Parsons-Girard KS area...two is Hays-Russell KS area...and three is Pampa-Wheeler TX area. I would have to put in honorable mentions for the Throckmorton-Haskell TX area, the Wellington-Harper KS area, as well as the Grand Island-Hastings-Aurora NE area. I would have to say in any given 5 yr stretch of time, I can rely on at least several great chases in these areas. I have always loved the Texas Panhandle for the meanest supercells that can possibly brew up; and this has always had some "magic", even when it looked like things could never setup and produce intense tornadic supercells.
 
I second that. :D
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Personally, I have always been fascinated by that fact that there are "mini alleys" within tornado alley. Why do these little hotspots always seem to decent producers of tornadic storms. There are many of them around. I don't think that we'll have a solid answer to that question for a long time.
That being said.........probably my little "pet" area that has been very very good to me over the years is what I call "The O'Neill alley". This area actually stretches roughly from Valentine Nebraska to O'Neill Nebraska.
And as time goes by, I'm becoming more intrigued by the area around extreme northwest Nebraska and the adjoining part of extreme southwest South Dakota....extending eastward thru the Pine Ridge Indian reservation. In the past 3 seasons I've bagged tornadoes near Gordon, Nebraska twice (even in 2006...can you believe it!) and last year on the Indian Reservation. Gorgeous country, the res. Flat-out gorgeous. I'm inclined to think that a lot more tornadoes occur around that area than are ever spotted....even with more chasers in the field.
My other little pet area is extreme eastern New Mexico....from south of Clayton down to about Clovis. Some of the most wicked tornadic storms I've ever witnessed occur there....and the roads are fairly decent...and the scenery is much more beautiful than the adjoining area of far west Texas.
 
if you ever chase in illinois on a svr day more often than not, tor and svr warning will flood out of the mini alley in north central illinois........From La Salle to Peoria to Bloomington that triangle area seems to be a catalyst for intense weather, im sure a couple of IL chasers could vouch for that one
 
I'm always interested in this topic for some reason. It's likely all chance and where you chase the most. But at the same time some things stand out about where I've seen my tornadoes or more importantly where I haven't that I chase frequently. I made up a map real quick and think I have them all(which really isn't that many compared to most that chase as often as I do).

tornadomap.jpg


If you go by tornado days, north central NE is a big spot for me. Pretty much the area Joel mentioned bounded by Ainsworth-O'Neill-Bartlett or a small surrounding area. Now here is what is the most important I think. I live basically at Omaha(just north 20 miles right on the river). The 5-16-99 one was my first chase and that tornado was only about 15 miles from home. It was a longer-lived tornado(though I really didn't get much of it). Now notice the surrounding ones closer to home, 10-9-01, 4-22-01, 6-13-04, and 8-26-04. ALL of those tornadoes were VERY short-lived. Add those all up and it'd be hard getting 5 minutes total for them. Take that away and the area near home is very very bare. For as much as I chase the closer areas like, ne NE, nw IA, ne KS, nw MO and se SD....I don't see crap there! But that spot in nc NE really pays off with 5 tornado days and most of those tornadoes were longer-lived.

It is quite funny to me now when I look at the map and focus on the area near home. Other than the April 19 03 one in OK I think all 5 of those closest to home are the shortest-lived tornadoes I have(when I count what I saw of 5-16-99). They are.

Not a fan of eastern NE, western IA....and a definite fan of north central NE.
 
Liberal--Johnson/Ulysses--Sublette Kansas...my lucky triangle in the Plains

Lucky places in the desert...

Toltec, AZ a town in the Central Deserts; storms seem to congregate there in Bermuda Triangle fashion

Goldfield, AZ (ghost town) attracts storms and this mountain is there:
Superstition Mountain
which is also a
Lightning magnet

Willcox and playa (lake bed), which is in the southeast corner of AZ and gets more frequent monsoon storms because of the flow coming from Old Mexico.

Desert foothill towns north of Phoenix including Carefree, Black Canyon City, New River, Fountain Hills, Cave Creek and Troon (north Scottsdale) attract storms that roll off the Mogollon Rim at night.
 
if you ever chase in illinois on a svr day more often than not, tor and svr warning will flood out of the mini alley in north central illinois........From La Salle to Peoria to Bloomington that triangle area seems to be a catalyst for intense weather, im sure a couple of IL chasers could vouch for that one
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All you have to do is shoot for Tazwell County, they ALWAYS get something. ;)

Stan
 
Redshirt, MT...I was on a really crappy supercell that day (6/14/06)...the storm had pretty much died out with it's precipitation core, deminishing every second...but then, as it moved from Deadwood, into Reshirt...it because a donut..with a a big inflow feeder (the hole in the center), of a moisture gathering base...the supercell, had lots of rotation and banding. Also, I have had luck in Redshirt, MT before on a storm in 2002.
 
All you have to do is shoot for Tazwell County, they ALWAYS get something. ;)

Stan
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im usually right on that border of tazwell and woodford co in the el paso-secor area seems like anytime i sit there NWS issues a tor for peoria tazewell woodford or mc lean
 
Mike
That map is super. Very nicely done. Must have taken a little time to do.


My favorite targeted areas where I have seen wallclouds, tornadoes and more are the area between St. Joseph , MO and the Missour/Kansas airport area.


I have a warm spot for the area in Texas that Doug Raflik and I saw that great Wall Cloud storm however I have not been back there since and may never get there again.

:) :D
 
I'll add a vote for Harper County, KS. That area yeilded lots of supercells and tornadic storms in the late 1990's and first couple years of 2000ds. On one of our tours, we spent five days straight hunting in Harper County.

Another sweet spot seems to be in the vicinity of Meade KS.
 
In Colorado the local hotspot is the Palmer Divide (what else :rolleyes: ). On nine out of ten severe weather days there will be good storms anywhere in a southwest-northeast oriented corridor about one hundred miles in width from Colorado Springs all the way up to Holyoke. You are almost guaranteed to see significant severe weather consistently in northern El Paso County/central and eastern Elbert County/northern Lincoln County/central and eastern Araphahoe and Adams County/all of Morgan County/northeastern Weld County/all of Washington County/northern Yuma County/all of Logan County/ all of Sedwick and Phillips County, with the best storms occurring in the southern and easternmost part of the corridor. This is our little mini alley, with all the significant tornadic events in Colorado having occurred in or near this alley in the last sixteen years ( 6/6/90 Limon F4, 5/31/96 twin F2's south of Fort Morgan, 5/13/96 Elba F3, 7/5/00 Dailey F3, 7/21/00 Riverside Reservoir F2, 5/12/04 Cedar Point tornadic family). Nothing decent happened in this area this year in terms of significant severe weather, so hopefully next year we'll actually get a supportive SURFACE based storm environment that would support a tornadic event or two in this area sometime between May and July. :) One thing I've learned is that if the 'Palmer Divide Alley' doesn't produce any tornadoes for a year or two, that year following the unproductive streak something spectacular will likely occur. It never fails us Colorado chasers. B)
 
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