Wednesday was a bit frustrating for both the tour guide and my fellow storm chasers. The morning started with our briefing. Bill Reid of Tempest Tours indicated that conditions looked favorable in eastern Colorado as well as near Woodward in northern Oklahoma. He decided we would head for the Colorado area, particularly because that area had tornado activity the day before.


 

Wednesday was a bit frustrating for both the tour guide and my fellow storm chasers. The morning started with our briefing. Bill Reid of Tempest Tours indicated that conditions looked favorable in eastern Colorado as well as near Woodward in northern Oklahoma. He decided we would head for the Colorado area, particularly because that area had tornado activity the day before.


The storm chase vans departed about 11 a.m. heading west. Bill constantly reviewed weather conditions on his laptop. He began doubting his decision to head west to Colorado and decided that Woodward looked more promising.


We drove for several hours, making pit stops every hour or so where we could pick up a snack - no lunch stop today - time and distance dictated we get to our target site as soon as possible. We did see a possible storm development on radar as we headed east. In the meantime Bill was also seeing significant storm development back in eastern Colorado. It was now too late to attempt to reach this site - too far and not enough time to make it to Colorado. The cell we were pursuing ultimately died. However in eastern Colorado severe weather was occurring.


This is the real life of a storm chase - some days you are lucky and find severe weather and a possible tornado and other days you go home a bit disappointed but stay positive that tomorrow will be the day you find a tornado. We did, however, have a great late supper in Cherokee, Okla., so all was not lost. The vans arrived at our motel about 11 p.m. in Pratt, Kan.


Meet Chrys


In addition to sharing my travels with all of you, I thought you might be interested in learning about who a storm chaser is, why they chase and their backgrounds. Today I highlight Chrys M. Tremththanmor.


“I lived in Maryland for a number of years when I was a child. I remember having to go down into the basement when we had storm warnings, although I didn’t want to go into the basement. I wanted to see the storms!


“Many years have passed since that time. I now make my home in Daventry, England, and I left a career as a bank manager to become a priest in the Church of England. I love unusual travel experiences, and I enjoy photography, so I decided that I should finally come out of that basement and try to photograph storms and tornadoes.


“Last summer I went through the Northwest Passage on a Russian icebreaker, and as a result I can now interpret ice charts. This trip I’m learning how to interpret data such as dew points and wind shears. I don’t think any of this knowledge will help me in my day job, but it does provide interesting illustrations for my sermons.


“I am keeping a travel blog about the trip on my website, www.travellinghopefully.co.uk, if you want to read more.”