Day 9 - 4 States in one day

12 June 2010

Today's adventures took us into 4 different states - Colorado, Kansas, Oklahoma and Texas. In total we've covered about 4000 miles in 8 days chasing! We left eastern Colorado about midday for a target destination of somewhere in the Texas panhandle. We went west into Kansas and straight south through Oklahoma and into Texas. One strange thing to note about today was the crazy temperature differences we experienced. We got up in a fairly cold drizzly Colorado, about 61F. As we drove across the states, sometimes under cloud , sometimes in clear skies, sometimes near cold outflow boundaries of approaching storms and sometimes in their warm behinds, we must have experienced a range of around 30F. But not just in one direction, we drove into chase territory and we hit temperatures around 90F, then within stormy regions, back to 70F, up again to 82F as we drove out of their outflow and so on. The thermometer in the car regularly acts as another useful tool to indicate where we were in relation to storms or other weather scenarios.Texas was the place to be as this is where the SPC had issued the strongest threat of severe weather. However, it so happened that the severe weather found us a little before this. We were in Kansas heading south when storms started to fire very near us. Granted, things were also already kicking off in our target area of Texas, but we thought as we were closer to these building storms in Kansas, let's stick with them for a while and then wait for the storms from Texas to track their way north to come and find us! This was quite a possibility today due to a meridinal flow. The general flow of the weather is partly driven by the direction of the jet stream winds. The jet stream winds are extremely fast channels of winds high up in the troposphere. They are not visible to us due to their altitude, but can reach speeds of up to 400mph and in essence guide the weather we know around different areas of the globe. They travel in an easterly direction but are by no means uniformed; they can twist and twirl as they go. Today, part of the jet stream that was over the USA was turning in a northerly direction and that meant it was hopefully going to bring all those lovely storms to us!We played with the Kansas storms for a while, including driving full pelt down a straight road through the tail end of one of the storms. The reason being we needed to be a little more south on these storms as that is where visibility is often best for any tornadoes it may put down (also it was fun driving through walls of heavy rain, knowing you are on the tail end, and safe!) When we were the other side, at this point actually in Oklahoma, Tim managed to capture the outflow from the storm crossing the road (see the haziness under the storm). This is the rainshaft from the rear end of the storm and often we can see this from clouds in England, but mostly to a lesser extent.

SPC Day 1 Weather Outlook as at 06:00UTC (01:00 Central Time the night before)

SPC 01:00UTC day 1 forecast for Sat June 2010

SPC Day 1 Weather Reports for the day.

SPC storm reports for Sat June 2010

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