I went to bed the previous night planning on targeting the dryline bulge in Woodward, OK. When I awoke, it appeared on some of the models that this dryline bulge was not going to happen. It also changed the surface winds somewhat in that area, and they were no longer as backed as they had been previously.
The spot that I was in actually didn’t look too bad, so I hung around Sweetwater. I questioned if storms would fire later on in the day, however, and ended up moving north into the panhandle. As I approached Childress, a storm had fired… game on!
I timed it pretty well, and the storm looked pretty good as I approached.
I got to a rest stop just east of Hedley that had a good view. It was high-based still, and low-precipitation, which was beautiful, but not anything that was about to produce a tornado.
I continued north and found a huge line of chasers on the side of the road north of Hedley. I went all the way to the end of the line to park. Coincidentally, I ran into a couple old friends who were right across the street, Blaize Edwards and Adam Davis! I chased with those two on April 14, 2012, and they also bailed me out last year in Elmer, OK after I wrecked my car. We had been in touch that day, but I didn’t know exactly where they’d be.
We sat there and watched as this storm took a crap. From there we decided to drop south to Turkey, but as we were on our way, those storms died, too. The anvil tops of these storms were drifting southeast for some reason, and we figured they were choking on their own outflow. We called the chase at 6pm in Childress, and I took off east to head home for the night.
Of course as I was driving home, storms began to intensify, and there was a tornado near Turkey, but it was after dark, so I wasn’t too bummed about missing it. I was more upset that I hadn’t stuck with my original target of Woodward, OK, however, as there was a beautiful cone tornado at sunset just north of town!
This ended a streak of 4 consecutive chases with a tornado!