June 10, 2010
(Poor WiFi connections prevented proper revision and photo attachments for today’s blog. Here is the updated blog for June 10.)
Most of the daylight hours were spent trying to determine if and where severe storms would fire. After three days without any significant storms, we were more than ready for Mother Nature to do her stuff. In the Colorado town of Holyoke, we encountered storm chaser Reed Timmer and his unique Storm Research Vehicle (better known as the Dominator) and an accompanying Discovery Channel film crew shooting footage for next season’s Discovery Channel Storm Chasers TV show. The Dominator is designed to protect its occupants from tornadic winds and hail.
Late afternoon found us in Alliance, Nebraska watching a developing storm. Strong wind and heavy rain forced us to retreat from Alliance and head into the Nebraska Sand Hills in full chase mode. Chase mode quickly turned into escape mode as the storm intensified and began to produce large hail. We found shelter under the awning of a fast food drive-in restaurant in Mullen, Nebraska. While there, we were treated to an awesome cloud-to-cloud
(CC) lightning display. Eventually, the storms weakened to the point so that we could continue to our hotel in North Platte, Nebraska. All along the way, the CC lightning display continued interspersed with periods of heavy rain. Tomorrow, our target area is eastern Colorado.