Day 2 Supercell intercept in Decatur,Texas

Well what an absolute wild chase day. We left Little Rock, Arkansas at 8 am and headed for the Red River border between Oklahoma and Texas. We had targeted Vernon, Texas down through Graham Texas and west of Wichita Falls as a potential area for discrete supercells to fire along a sharping dryline bulge. Around 2:30 PM the SPC issued a 5% tornado chance in this exact area. Our forecast was on point. We knew we needed to get to the dryline, and watch the radar to try and position ourselves. About 6 hours later we were south of Oklahoma City maneuvering through clusters of storms(some of which severe) firing off in SW Oklahoma. We caught a real nice cloud structure as we came around the backside of one of the cells.  Radar indicated some rotation on this cell.

Wall cloud, SW Oklahoma.

Wall cloud, SW Oklahoma.

Around 3:15 the SPC issued an MD outlook for our target area. Again, they were expecting discrete supercells with some tornadoes possible. As we crossed the red river we began to see cumulonimbus development along the dryline. A Cell fired up and we started chasing it. We were trying to manuever around the the southeast side of the cell. Velocity was showing clear mesocyclone development and rotation. the cell eventually became tornado warned for over an hour as we chased it.

Unfortunately we never were able to get entirely ahead of the storm, but we got some great views of the massive storm. It had incredible colors(eerie dark green), the updraft was insane to watch, and the rotating wall cloud was so wild to me it almost wasnt real. I stood there in awe, chills running down my spine, just an unexplainable experience. We did not see any tornado, mainly because there was too much rain spiraling around the area where a tornado could be seen, along with trees blocking the view, and daylight dwindling. Authorities have yet to do damage assesment, but we talked to a local who had a family member witness a tornado on that cell cross the road about 5 miles away from us.

20130515_195511

20130515_201731

Today is a travel day, there is a possible setup friday into saturday up in South Dakota, but also a potential setup in Oklahoma and Kansas on Sunday. We decided to head towards Nebraska today, wait for more current model runs and then make a decision. if we run for South Dakota, we are pretty much stuck in Northern plains rest of the trip.  However, if we wait for Kansas, it may be a jam of chasers since itll be the weekend and the first legitimate severe weather setup of the year. Noone would be up in South Dakota.

Ill give a quick update this evening!

Nick

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