miraje: (wtf wide eyed cat)
Um...uh oh. I swear I just saw a story on the front page of either CNN or MSNBC a few days ago about experts worried that the new levies once again haven't been built to withstand a strong hurricane. My colleagues are already anxious to go hurricane chasing, but they have no interest in doing it in New Orleans. They're hoping for Texas.

School started today. This makes year number 20 for me. Sigh, only about four more to go.
miraje: (cool lightning)
Eep. Today is going to be a bad day somewhere between OKC and Des Moines. I'll be chasing up in southern Kansas with one of Jeremy's SPC coworkers who has the day off. Jeremy has to work today's high risk, and I guess CNN is there filming all day. So if you flip to CNN and they start broadcasting from Norman, Oklahoma, look for the skinny young guy with glasses in the corner. ;)
miraje: (cool lightning)
The last couple of days have been an adventure. A friend that graduated from ISU in meteorology with me is in grad school at the University of Alabama-Huntsville now, and she and two friends came to Oklahoma on Friday to go storm chasing for a week. Friday night just before they arrived at my house I watched Greensburg get wiped out on radar, although I didn't know quite what I had witnessed yet. Seeing that massive circulation go directly over Greensburg had me fairly worried, but the reports of where the tornado went were conflicting at the time.

Anyway, Elise and company got here pretty late, so we didn't talk much until Saturday morning. After looking at the severe weather setup, they decided to come back to my house that evening to stay another night, so I sort of invited myself along on their storm chase. Unfortunately for us Saturday was an awful day to go chasing despite how many tornadoes actually occurred.

We had three main problems that day: )

So we went home without seeing any tornadoes, but I wouldn't call the day a total waste. I got to see my Dad and hug him and talk to him about what was going on in Greensburg, and seeing the rural tornado damage was a surreal experience. It was also surreal driving around so close to Greensburg. Helicopters were flying all over the place even while there were storms going on, and just knowing that the devastated town was just a few miles away was sobering. Less than 24 hours earlier a beast rolled through that area and left its mark all over the landscape. I wish I had taken more pictures, but it seemed that we were always in a hurry to catch up to storms. I tried to take some pictures from the car, but they're blurry as hell.

Moving on to Sunday, I spent the majority of the day studying for my Radiation final. Elise and company went chasing out in western Oklahoma and Jeremy was working midnight shifts, so I had a fair amount of time to myself during the day to study. The final was at 8am the next morning, and I felt as if I did rather well considering how distracted I was by everything.

And now, I have a reason to be elated. I got the final grades back from Radiation, and I got an A!!! I needed that on so many levels. Today I finished my IT Skills semester project, so I only have one more project to complete to bring an end to my first year as a graduate student! I'm so ready for a break, even if it's going to be a short one.
miraje: (cool lightning)
We went storm chasing in Texas again yesterday!. The whole story is in the captions of the images. This was the best footage we got:



Most of the still photos I took pretty much sucked because there wasn't enough light, and we didn't have time to stop. Most of them thus suffered from the blurry, but I did manage to get one shot early on in the day that I really liked (click on it for a larger version):


miraje: (cool lightning)
Wanna go on a virtual storm chase? Instead of uploading all my pictures somewhere and writing up the big long story in here again, I just figured out that non-Facebook people can still see my Facebook photo album. So go gawk at the pretty tornadoes like I've been doing all day. I still can't believe I saw that yesterday.
miraje: (cool lightning)
This sort of sums up my day yesterday. I chased in Texas and saw some amazing tornadoes, and two tornadoes in Kansas hit towns that I know very well. I'll update later this evening with pictures and everything else that was crazy, but those of you on Facebook get to see the pics first. ;)
miraje: (lightning exploding dog)
I'm home. In short, I saw one baby tornado, a few absolutely gorgeous storms/supercells (not all of them were actual supercells), ate fast food way too much for my own good, met a lot of storm chasers, and travelled around 7,000 miles to ten different states (some of them more than once). It's not that we were missing the tornadoes. There just weren't any good ones in the plains. We were always in the right place at the right time, but we only saw a lot of rotation instead of tornadoes. Oh well, at the very least it was an outstanding learning experience. I've also expressed interest in being involved next year.

I'll write a more in-depth entry of exactly where we went and what we saw a little later. I'll also post the pictures from when we hiked in Rocky Mountain National Park on June 1st.

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February 2010

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