Severe Weather 2011 / 2012 SeasonUSA Chase May 2011

Distance driven today: 560kms | Total so far: 10894kms

Storms were likely to fire locally again today so I didn't have to drive far.

I started heading E when some activity approached Guthrie, about 40kms N of Oklahoma City, so I headed N up the I35. On the way:


Close to Guthrie and I'd gone too far. I heard a siren in the area and assumed it was a tornado siren (video below). With a massive shelf cloud now visible to my SW, I wondered whether I could get back S down the I35 in time. I gave it a red hot go:


When things settled I stopped and watched some scud:


And another little guster to the W:


There was more activity to the W, but nested underneath this massive shelf cloud, I was REALLY curious to know what it looked like outside of it. I realised it might be a hefty ride S before I managed to get ahead and see it properly, but I took the punt anyway.


I stopped in Moore, just S of Oklahoma City, and while there was no magnificent guster, like I was hoping, I did get a glimpse of the side of the storm with some mammatus lit up by the setting sun:


The radar showed more storms intensifying about 120kms to my NW around Watonga, so I darted W along the I40. I stopped around Calumet for some food and fuel, then went a little further N. In the darkness, what looked to be a massive lowering was barely visible only through the lightning flashes. When I got close enough I realised I'd found a lovely gust front. Pity it was dark. I did my best in the limited light.


This thing was moving fast and I really struggled to stay ahead of it.


I eventually ended up with more views from under its base, than the guster itself.


Stuff weakened pretty rapidly after that so I took another hotel for my third night in Oklahoma City. With all the driving around in circles, I'm getting to know the place.