Saturday, May 25, 2013

Day #6 (chase day): May 25, 2013
Starting Point: North Platte, Nebraska
Ending Point: Laramie, Wyoming
Mileage Traveled: 460 (Trip Total: 3086)

Today started out in North Platte, Nebraska. Our target area was northwestern Nebraska. This area was chosen because of the high amounts of CAPE and EHI. Dew points were also pretty high in the area. Within the area, Alliance, Nebraska was the closest city. The location of this city also gave us the opportunity to shift to the north to Chadron, Nebraska, or southwest to Scottsbluff, Nebraska. There was also a road that could take us directly east. Having a road network, which gives us multiple directions to travel is a key so that if storms begin to form elsewhere we have easy access to them.

We got to Alliance, Nebraska around 1:30, before the storms started developing. This gave us an opportunity to sit and wait for the storms to come to us instead of chasing them like we did the first couple of days. While we were waiting we stopped by Carhenge, which is a replica of Stonehenge, but made out of old cars (photo below by John Frye, storms are trying to start in the background).

From there we made our way over to the western part of town to watch the storms come in and check the radar. The storm that we were watching began to gain strength, and was headed straight towards Alliance.

Once it strengthened and got closer, we headed east of Alliance and then a south to try to get ahead of the storm. This area would give us the best viewpoint of the storm. Once we stopped southeast of Alliance, some mammatus clouds (first picture below by Ashley Vedvig) were forming. Looking west back at the storm we had a really good view of two precipitation cores (second picture below from Jake Christensen). These two precipitation cores were a result of two storm cells merging into one storm cell (third picture below a closer view of the the storms updraft region by Alisa Hass).

After some time spent watching this storm develop we decided to head out towards Laramie, WY which was our stop for the night. On the way into town we got a nice sunset, picture below by Andy Courtney.

This concluded the end of day 6 of our great chase. Our sights are set on north central Nebraska or NE Wyoming for tomorrow.

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