We finally had our first storm chase of 2015 after a record-slow start to the season! An upper level disturbance and cold front were forecasted to stir up the atmosphere with marginal ingredients across western north Texas. The overall severe parameters were far from spectacular, but it was a great opportunity to dust off the gear and get back in the saddle. The atmosphere actually ended up exceeding our expectations and spit out a weak supercell to the southeast of Archer City, TX. Jenny met up with her friends, professional photographers Justin Terveen and James Langford, in Archer City and they headed east on Hwy 25/174 towards Windthorst. They followed the cell pictured below that had developed southeast of Archer City as it grew in intensity. At one point, it developed some strong low level rotation and a distinct wall cloud which indicated that development of a small tornado might be imminent. Fortunately, the dynamics were such that it was quickly undercut by colder air as it was also moving into more stable air to its east…thus, no tornado formed. Jenny, James and Justin continued staying just ahead of the storm driving east along Hwy 174 then turning south at Joy onto Hwy 148 and continued south for several miles. At the intersection of Hwy 148 and FM2127 they turned left heading east and skirted the south side of the storm along FM2127. The church scene captured below was near that intersection and made an excellent foreground for the developing outflow-driven shelf cloud. They ended the chase once they got to Hwy59 after it became apparent that the storms were dropping below severe limits. Overall, it was a great first chase of the season with many fine photographic opportunities for everyone!
- Storm Chasing