McPHERSON, Kan. — Weird day for the Hokie Storm Chasers. We passed through Salina, Kan., three times today but missed the large tornado that occurred a few miles north. We had moved a few miles east of Salina following some growing cumulonimbus clouds along a boundary between drier and moist air, then saw the new storm explode on radar just northwest of Salina. We moved north to catch the storm moving northeast. There was just one problem: It didn’t move northeast. It more or less stalled and reformed over its location, even wobbling back to the west at times, as it remained rooted where the dry line and an outflow boundary from previous night’s storms connected. And it spawned a long-lasting, highly visual tornado. From a hill to the northeast, we could at one point make out a lowering that likely turned into that tornado, but precipitation encroaching on our position, including possible large hail, forced us to move. Our consolation prize, however, was this low-precipitation supercell with striations that wrapped up northeast of the big storm. This storm had almost textbook structure, and was quite a stunning sight over the mostly open central Kansas terrain. I’m a big fan of LPs, so was quite excited to see this.
The days ahead will hold more chances of severe storms in the central U.S. , so we’ll be busy. And you’ll be warm back in Southwest Virginia, with several days of 80s to low 90s highs ahead.