Thursday, May 31, 2007

Day 5 May 30, 2007

Today we actually got to sleep in, yay! We left Colby, Kansas around 10 am after Scott had went for the first oil change, then we went to get something at Starbuck's out of town. There was a gift shop nearby so we went to check it out. When I go to shops I usually look for tornado stuff to add to my collection. This time I happened to find a green Tornado Chaser t-shirt and matching coffee mug. Bonus!

We then continued south into the Texas panhandle. We were going to play the triple point today in central Texas. I had done one last check of the models, but I couldn't see much updraft potential in today's setup. We had to be down there for the next few days anyways, so it was worth a shot.

As we were going through Oklahoma's panhandle, there were a few feeding lots with tons of cattle... peeeewwwwiiieeee! You ain't smelled methane if you've never smelled a feeding lot. Holly cow, no pun intended, but it was strong enough to make you wanna almost cry. Other than that, we had a nice cumulus field for early in the day, so it looked kinda promising. We managed to see two dust devils on the way down. The last one we saw was kicking up some dust behind trees and a building, then it went invisible. It then threw some peice of something - looked almost like metal scrap - near the side of the interstate... and then the van felt this sudden gust of wind for a second. From now on, the van should be called the Dust Devil Intercept Vehicle. Nothing like a little excitement when travelling in a place "with a whole lotta nothin". We went for a quick break and I decided to eat a steak burrito shortly after 1 pm.

When we were in Dumas, Texas, we went for our main lunch at a Subway. I wasn't quite hungry, so I just got myself a chocolate milk, three peanut butter cookies and a bag of chips. We then went to Amarillo so that Mike could pick up his package that got shipped down. It is a sensor that opens his shutter in the daytime so he is able to take daytime lightning pictures. After that, Ron wanted to bring us to the Cadillac Ranch just south of town. This was quite different to say the least. Where else can you find ten colourful old cadillacs with their front ends buried in a bull's field? It made for some interesting photos. There really wasn't much else to do... the trough had already gone through and nothing has fired yet. The sky was completely clear with just a few small soft looking cumulus. The inversion wouldn't break today.

We decided to head back into town and eat dinner at the Big Texan. I got a chance to say hello to a chaser named Roger Hill. For dinner, I ordered the mountain oysters and a peach iced tea. I still wasn't hungry. That's the thing with these types of trips... you are in a vehicle all day getting no exercise, so you don't build up an appetite quickly. Scott really thinks that I am able to eat the 72 ounch steak, but I really don't think so. He said to me "You know how you were talking about omens? If you don't eat the 72 ounch steak, you won't get to see a big tube." Hahaha funny Scott. I hope that wasn't his cold medicine talking... I highly doubt I could finish a meal like that... if I did, I'd probably die, so I wouldn't get to see that big tube afterall!

Tonight we are staying at a Super 8 in Amarillo, and have plans to do some laundry in the morning. Tomorrow it looks like our target will be somewhere in the Oklahoma panhandle according to Professor Gravelle.

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