Roger's SkyPix

SkyPix Tornadoes

Interstate in Danger

Interstate in Danger

[Part 1 of 2] We already had seen several tornadoes with an early-afternoon storm near a deep-layer cyclone, well west-southwest of here. After that storm died, I forecasted that some young convective towers, visible on the dryline far to our east, could grow into supercells. We also had an unusual but reasonable chance to intercept the "second-phase" event via I-80--a fortuitously placed and legally fast way to get there. As we headed east, a squall line formed, then evolved into a pearl necklace of supercells. We shot a relative gap in the line, one that was filling thanks to an expanding supercell's front-flank core. Several minutes after we cleared the storm, this became visible in a rear-view mirror, a few miles south of I-80 and moving north. In the time it took to pull over into the grass and call in the report, the rain-wrapped tornado grew into this tapered-barrel shape, clearly endangering motorists on the Interstate. The annals of tornado history are profusely littered with stories of folks driving into tornadoes they couldn't see. Fortnately, my fears here wren't realized; it was just visible enough for drivers to avoid.

3 NW Henderson NE (20 Jun 11), Looking W
(GPS)

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