Saturday, May 26, 2007

Day 1 May 26, 2007

It was that time of year again... we were going to head to tornado alley. It was Ron Gravelle, Scott Keddie, Ben Fuller, Sandra Gravelle, Lee Keddie, Pam Gregory, Mike Walker, Dave Hopper, and myself. This was going to be Ron's biggest tour yet - two vehicles and nine people.

What a nice day to depart too... cold and wet. Ron decided to book hotel rooms in Davenport, Iowa because this was Memorial Day weekend. That meant the possibility of traffic and full hotels.

Of course we had to have our omens... the rain drops were actually rotating anti-clockwise on the passenger side window. Really weird but it was probably the only rotation we were going to see today.

I guess Ron wasn't kidding when he said he started calling Ben "Camelot". This guy always has a camera strapped around his shoulder, always taking stills or video. I had to make a face at him when he was filming Scott's van from Ron's car.

Near Chicago we encountered very heavy rain. A couple tornado warnings were issued for nearby counties due to a heavy line of storms. They were pretty low topped and didn't seem to look very impressive. We saw a lowering trying to get its act together but it didn't amount to much. On another storm west of Chicago, we saw an updraft area with rising scud.

Later on, a third developing storm was in view, showing a small inflow band that didn't last very long. Today's storms were not impressive but it was just a travel day anyways... and an introduction to the storms of tornado alley for Ron's new clients.

One of the lessons was how to pronounce towns correctly. Lee, Scott's wife, learned this lesson the hard way when we were in Iowa, nearing Peoria. She pronounced it as "Pee-or-ia" and Scott said, "That sounds like diarrhea." Since then, we kept making jokes.

Tonight we're staying at a Super 8 in Davenport and plan to depart at 8 am tomorrow to get into position for some chasing. So far, Ben has took about 8 hours worth of video. I think he should save some tape for the storms later.

No comments:

Post a Comment