“I like your flower.” A phrase that has nothing and everything to do with our storm chasing trip. Our week of storm chasing was incredible. We got to see several big storms, which is why I went, but we also got so much more than that. The week that we were out was filled with laughter, with awesome sights that were new to me and to most of our group, and with awesome people that I am really glad I got to know.
I began the storm chasing journey purely to see the wonder of God, and I did, but in so many more ways than I had imagined. We not only saw God’s power through the storms, but his wonder in the landscapes that we saw, and his mystery and complexity in the museums that we visited.
It was a wonderful trip, and I got so much out of it, most of which was unplanned. I got to spend a week seeing things that I’ve never seen before with a group of amazing people that I would have probably never gotten to know otherwise. I will miss them this summer, there is no one else I would rather have spent a week trapped in a van with! (Who shall like my flower now?)
Did I get what I thought I would out of storm chasing? No. I got so much more. This has been an extraordinary journey that I have trouble expressing in words, but suffice to say, if you ever have the chance to storm chase with the incredible Mr. Carey, go for it!
Today was our last day to chase before we fly out tomorrow. We followed some storms and saw some cool clouds, but nothing really panned out into a storm. We drove for seemingly forever to get back to Amarillo, and we were all very tired when we reached the hotel. It was a long day, but we had fun bonding in the car even though we didn’t really see anything. This has been an incredible experience, and I would not change a single part of it for the world.
It was a full chase day. We followed a storm through the state of Kansas, and saw some amazing clouds, lightning, and even a couple of small funnels that dissipated rather quickly. We were on the go all day, breakfast was the only meal and we didn’t stop for bathrooms, driving nonstop to try and catch up to the wonder that is a supercell. The chase lasted into the night, and we drove to the hotel around 11 pm watching out the windows with awe at the show God had given us. It was an incredible experience that words can’t really describe, but suffice to say this trip has been well worth what we payed, and far beyond.
Today we began the game that we will probably be playing for the remainder of our trip. This was our first actual chase day, and it has hopefully set the tone for the rest of the trip. We drove through at least three states today, getting into position for what looks to be promising storm chasing weather. We started in Texas this morning and have stopped for the night in Kansas. We spent the majority of today In Oklahoma, where we thought we might get a chance for some weather spotting, but despite some impressive cloud structures and growth, the storm didn’t pan out. A good deal of waiting will probably make up the rest of our trip. We should not have to go far tomorrow, as the bad weather is literally supposed to be right here in the part of Kansas where we are staying. Here is hoping that tomorrow the weather turns in our favor as it is supposed to do.
Cave hikes are awesome. Desert hikes are awesome. Cave hikes followed by desert hikes are NOT awesome. Yesterday, we completed a journey the Carlsbad caverns, a 2 mile excursion, and stopped for lunch. After lunch, we went to Guadalupe national park / mountain range for what was supposed to be half a mile of fun, as we were unable to acquire water before this particular adventure commenced. Somehow however, we managed to turn a half a mile into 2.5 miles, and without water I ended up dehydrated. Not fun. Then it was back in the van headed for the hotel after visiting the salt flats, which are indeed very flat and very salty, to end our adventures on this awesomely tiring day. It has been fun, but I think there was about 26.435 hours of fun had within the course of about 8 hours. What a day.
Today was mainly filled with driving to position ourselves to watch for weather tomorrow. It furthered the exhaustion. We went and saw a museum entirely dedicated to sand, followed by a museum dedicated to meteorites.
Day 3 cont.
Ok, so it was only two miles, but what an intense and beautiful two miles it is! An 800 ft drop filled with a mile of steeply winding walkway, followed by a mile of path through incredible cave structures. A two and a half hour journey that was both awe inspiring and terrifying (though probably only for me, being afraid of heights). Now we are off to lunch, and then for a hike! (because the cavern wasn’t enough apparently).
On a side note, the weather has taken a turn and made us cautiously optimistic for chasing opportunities tomorrow.
Today we are going back to the carlsbad caverns to explore the caves there! The bat flight was interesting to see last night, and was followed by an adventure to the pizza hut. We still have sunny skies for today, so we get to be tourists again. After spelunking, I believe our plan is to eat lunch at the caverns and to go on a hike. Tomorrow the weather will begin to stir, but today new Mexico is ours to explore!