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High Plains Drifter

disclaimer:  "The meteorological views/forecast thinking expressed are those solely of the author of this blog
and do not necessarily represent those of official National Weather Service forecast products,
therefore read and enjoy at your own risk and edification!"

July 29, 2009

Added new page with licensing information

Filed under: UTM Updates — Mike U @ 2:23 am

I finally put together a page for licensing information for Mike Umscheid Photography images.  Anyone interested in using/publishing any images found on for commercial use, like in a book, magazine, calendar, corporate internet website, etc. should refer to this page for more information.

July 21, 2009

Chase Acct: July 20, 2009 (Central KS)

Filed under: Chase Accounts,Latest Chases,Storm Chasing — Mike U @ 12:16 pm

…The Great Bend LP Supercell…

My target from Dodge City was pretty much anywhere along a line from roughly Pratt to Larned to Hays. First I was favoring the northern end of this line, then I began to favor the southern end of this line right as I was about to leave Dodge City at about 3pm… but in the end, I ultimately decided to just play the middle — Larned. I arrived in Larned to find some towering cumulus growth from my west-southwest to north-northwest. I just decided to hang out here on the outskirts of town to watch things evolve. I called my friend Robin Lorenson who was going to be out chasing as well… she started out in Salina. Her target was Great Bend, so we were not far from each other. We just decided that since we were so close we should just chase together. We met up on Hwy 19 about 7 miles east of Larned. At the time I was most interested in the small cell trying to develop just to our northwest. We also watched with interest the aggressive cumulus congestus development to our southeast which would become the Kingman supercell. We sat at this spot for some time watching our small shower struggle against some drier air. The best pooling of upper 60s to near 70 dewpoints was farther north. A storm rapidly took nice shape on radar and we could pick out the base in the distant north. This would become our target storm so we headed north for the intercept. We took Hwy 56 northeast to Pawnee Rock then north on county roads from that point on. We stopped a couple times north of Pawnee Rock once we got a good view of the structure of this storm. It was a beautiful LP supercell! Our second stopping point along this county road was a beautiful view from atop a hill. The storm had a nice flared base, a small wall cloud, broiling convection atop this, and a wonderful backsheared anvil.

From this point on, Robin and I chased separately as she headed north to photograph from closer in while I continued my structure chasing from the south. I followed it south and east through the Great Bend Airport area south to the Stafford County line until the storm ultimately died a rapid death around sunset. What a great way to conclude my 3-day chase weekend!!

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July 20, 2009

Photographed a beautiful LP supercell around Great Bend

Filed under: chase mode updates — Mike U @ 9:31 pm

Having dinner in great bend at this time with Robin who I chased with for part of the chase. After we split off sje photographed the storm from the northwest while I stayed south. It was gorgeous from both perspectives! Will had back to Dodge after dinner here in Great Bend
(Sent by Mike’s Alltel Blackberry smartphone)

Beautiful LP supercell!!

Filed under: chase mode updates — Mike U @ 7:33 pm

Nw of great bend at 732p cdt
(Sent by Mike’s Alltel Blackberry smartphone)

Distant svr storm near kingman

Filed under: chase mode updates — Mike U @ 6:26 pm

625pm cdt
(Sent by Mike’s Alltel Blackberry smartphone)

Hanging tight in Larned at 445pm cdt

Filed under: chase mode updates — Mike U @ 4:43 pm

The best convergence appears to be along a line from roughly Kinsley
northward through LaCrosse up towards Hays. I’m sitting in Larned
watching cumulus develop along this convergence axis… I think this
corridor is the best area… some of the cu appears towering distant
north up toward I-70… more later.

Mike Umscheid Photography

Play the nose of the upper jet streak

Filed under: chase mode updates — Mike U @ 2:45 pm

Where will the nose of the upper jet streak be by late this
afternoon/early evening? Nosing into southwestern/south-central KS.
At first, I was thinking of heading north toward Hays, but am
reconsidering this sitting here in DDC. I think I may drift due east
of here… There is an outflow boundary retreating back north into
south-central KS… and it is at the intersection of this outflow
boundary with the synoptic front farther west… that could be very
interesting later on this afternoon. My gut tells me to just head to
Greensburg, perhaps, and re-evaluate from there. I may leave DDC here
within the hour

Mike Umscheid Photography

Chase Acct: July 19, 2009 (Northeast NM)

Filed under: Chase Accounts,Latest Chases,Storm Chasing — Mike U @ 2:07 pm

Sunday, July 19th was another very successful day of high plains storm photography.  It wasn’t a day with a long-lived isolated supercell, but that wasn’t needed Sunday.  I came away with at least a couple of images that will certainly make a nice addition to my 2009 storm portfolio — including one special lightning shot that will be titled “Right Between the Ears” (image number 2 below) — a unique image of a tall, single, branched lightning flash in the distance amidst a narrow hail core composed perfectly between the two small isolated mounds that make up “Rabbit Ear Mountain” to the north of Clayton, NM.  I actually  managed to get two brilliant cloud-to-ground daytime flashes with Rabbit Ear Mountain in the frame.

After this, storms became more organized with better structure, and I drove northwest about 10 miles or so on Hwy 64 and watched some real interesting storm structure develop.  I then headed south of Clayton on Hwy 402 — a highway I had now become familiar with these past couple days — as a well-rounded circular structured storm updraft developed just to my west.  I needed to get east ahead of this, and I did so taking Hwy 102 which turned into Ranch 808 as it crossed into Texas west of Dalhart.  I photographed some really close cloud-to-ground flashes, both of which were a bit over-exposed unfortunately, before I ended the chase.  Images from this chase are below.

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July 19, 2009

On my way to dodge

Filed under: chase mode updates — Mike U @ 9:14 pm

After another fun day of storm photography on the high plains! Should pull in to dodge around 1230am cdt
(Sent by Mike’s Alltel Blackberry smartphone)

doing some final lightning photography west of dalhart

Filed under: chase mode updates — Mike U @ 8:41 pm

I will be making the drive back to dodge city after I am through
here…. since tomorrow’s severe weather threat looks like western

Mike Umscheid Photography

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