Monday, July 24, 2017

Chase 070917 Blue Earth - Nicollet Co. MN







The GPS Track is not true due to equipment outages mid-chase. It is however, accurate enough to provide background and position detail. This is one time when carrying back up equipment saved the day. I think location and positional data is critical both during and after a chase.

Since the NWS does a much better job at "Day After" wrap ups, I'm going to begin to eliminate information pertaining to the actual storm event and focus on items exclusive to our chase alone. The reason being is I'm realizing these entries are a LOT of work to put together and end up being duplicated by the NWS anyway. So, a summary of this event can be viewed at the MPX NWS Web Page

I initially drove to Sauk Centre MN thinking the initiation would occur just north of there mid to lat afternoon. After noting the boundary had begun to set up south of there, chase partner Brad Winger and I decided to meet in Wilmar MN. As I drove, the CU field began to become robust indicating we were where we needed to be. Now all we needed was an updraft.


This was a fun cell to watch just explode before our eyes. It's been a while since I had an unobstructed view of the birth of what would become the supercell thunderstorm we'd chase for most of its life cycle.


Chaser Brad Winger pointing at the cloud.


Chaser Brad Winger turning around to camera with cloud behind him.


This well rooted (and well sheared) anvil was just to our west and feeding the new initiation in the video below.




This is why you don't chase at night. The ragged cloud overhead was in fact, a rotating wall cloud.


And the lightning was so quick, We never even saw it. Point #2: Never expect lightning to light your way.


That touched down shortly after it crossed the road ahead of me. This became the Courtland MN F0 TOR which occurred north of town. Fortunately, it produced a small amount of damage to the siding of a nearby barn.






Not a good idea to get out of your vehicle during one of these...




Here's a replay of the chase. Focus was hosed for most because this was recorded using an old iPhone with the "Broadcast Me App. Works great except for one very important thing:

You can't disable auto-focus. 




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