Central South Dakota
A massive amount of instability pooled along and south of
the I90 corridor with a surface wave riding up a cold front
northwest of Mitchell. What had potential to be a big day
was. As Joel Lampe said: "Persistence will pay off."
This coming from another chaser who got sucked into the
Iowa fiasco on the 16th. Bottom line is we were due.
David and I had Joel Lampe (and Lilly) join us at the last minute this day. I was a little apprehensive about having
a dog with until Joel told me she was at the Bennington EF4 with him last year. Um, yeah. The dog has the good
luck touch. She was in.
Less than impressive video grab of one of the brief touchdowns west of Wessington Springs, SD early on.
Of course once we got situated on a good hill looking southwest, it fell apart. A new cell was forming to the south so
we decided to head back east and drop south as it looked like it would merge with the one to the north.
|New cell to the south as we decide to move and...
|The older cell to the north spins another tornado down. My lens liked the tornado and not the ground obviously.
|Joel keeps an eye on both cells after the torn lifted. I like how you can see both vaults in the shot.
We go to leave and it does it one more time. Just happened to get it on the rear facing GoPro. Although large in
appearance, this also was very brief.
The cells did merge so we headed back through Wessington Springs then south on 281 about 3 miles. The
lightning was wicked here and quite nerve wracking. The tornado which would nail Wessington Springs would form
in the rain wrapped clear slot just to the right of center in this image.
|Highly cropped. Hard to see in there from this vantage point.
|Another look at the clear slot area. Tornado was in progress at this point in there.
Looking down the flanking line. There were a couple of pretty decent little spin ups under it on the east side of 281.
|David and Joel watching the rotation along the back side of the wall cloud.
|RFD clears out the back of the storm. Strong rotation so time to stick with this.
|Heading east just south of 34. Our first two north options to get closer would have been poor road choices.
After turning north and flanking the north moving tornado on 393rd ave, we found the perfect place to stop.
Commence filming and shooting. David getting his gear ready.
|Joel taking in the EF4 Alpena tornado.
|What in incredible sight.
|After several minutes it looked like the rope out was imminent.
This crazy tornado strengthened one more time before
roping out for real near Alpena.
There was a second tornado warned supercell just to the southeast of the dying Apena storm. There was a funnel
cloud reported on it but we never noticed anything.
|And as a lot of great chase days end, the sky had one last fabulous treat for us. An incredible chase day to say the least.