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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!"

June 20, 2010

Chase Trip Day Three (June 19) Summary

Written by my chase partner Evan Bookbinder:

Day 3 of the chase trip (June 19th) played out pretty much as we expected this morning, targeting north central Kansas once again (High Plains Magic will have to wait one more day). After checking out a few storms along highway 24 (including ping pong ball hail near our favorite town of Osborne), we got on an HP supercell just north of Beloit. This storm served up some amazing structure, including one of the most aqua green skies I’ve ever seen, and filled with cloud to ground lightning. It made several attempts at wrapping up, but after clearly becoming outflow dominant we dropped south for some distant shelf/structure shots before letting the bow echo overtake us. Additional upstream elevated storms provided a great lightning show well into the evening, but the flooding is getting quite bad across this region back toward Concordia. We are headed toward York and I-80, ready to bust west for tomorrow’s show.

Start:  Denver (Westminster), CO
End:  York, NE
Day 3 mileage: 648 mi
trip mileage: 1453 mi

Images from Day 3′s chase:








  1. One of the things I love about storms over the prairies is the space that’s created between the clouds and the horizon, the contrast of colors and the play of light. Maybe I’ve said this on your blog before, but I ooh and ahh every time I see it!

    Comment by pcNielsen — June 20, 2010 @ 9:24 am

  2. Hey Mike

    First … those pix of the tall tornado in CO were truly awesome. Congratulations – that must have been a great moment in your life. Do you think there is something about the CO storm conditions that in general favor taller tornadoes?

    Also, I really liked your photo of the “pink wall cloud”. Great photo moment – excellent colors in that composition. It’s good to see people take the time to set up the right conditions for photo’s, and look at light from different angles.

    Keep up the great work!!

    Redondo Beach

    Comment by Pete — June 20, 2010 @ 10:17 am

  3. Thank you very much Pete! It’s one of the most incredible moments I’ve experience storm chasing, that’s for sure. Colorado tends to have lower dewpoint temperatures which favor greater visibility for storms. There is generally less in the way of additional cloud cover to obscure storm structure, which makes for great photography. High based storms, in general, make for great photography on the high plains… having a tall tornado with the storm is having a huge cherry on top! It’s rare to photograph such a beautiful, tall tornado like this, and I am extremely fortunate to have experienced this! Thanks again Pete

    Comment by Mike U — July 2, 2010 @ 10:12 am

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