June 6th, 2004 Max, ND Supercells

Starting in Denver, CO, we drove hard all day and went 932 miles to see 2 very nice storms but missed a tornado by about 10 minutes. Initially we were along a trio of high-based supercells that had great structure. We chose to go after the southern one but had problems with Lake Sakakawea and were forced to drive 84 miles east to get across! That may have cost us the tube...
The southern storm was the first we intercepted, near Velva, ND and had fantastic structure but appeared to be way too high based to produce a tornado. As it got into the better moisture the base got lower and produced before we got there, only giving us a brief glimpse of the rope out. The storm had at least 3 well defined beaver tails and a great rotating mesocyclone and generated several large gustnadoes as it became outflow dominant. We stuck with it for quite a while because it was such a picturesque storm.
The second storm was near Benedict, ND and rode right up the outflow boundary left from our first storm. It was an easy intercept but the storm was ingesting the cold outflow from the previous storm and ended up being a very high-based LP supercell that was spinning like crazy. The storm was in a very high shear environment and was bent over so far that it literally looked horizontal, almost like a Slinky, yet it continued to rotate and produced a nice striated stack of plates before it finally died.

SPC Convective Outlook
                   SPC Tornado Prob.                       NOAA Storm Report


Large wall cloud to our north. The guests watch as the wall cloud passes to the east but does not produce a tornado. Impressive inflow bands on this storm! A number of gustnadoes form on the shear line.
Our storms on Wx-Worx Mobile Threat Net. On to the second storm. A nice LP storm with great structure and a well defined wall cloud. The updraft from our position beneath it. Striated updraft with striations.

All pictures (C) Richard Hamel 2017.

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