Saturday 15th June 2019 – Oklahoma (Moderate Risk)

Started today in Liberal with a general chase target of North Central Oklahoma, HRRR had been very constant in promoting a Supercell on the Stationery Boundary. On route we noted very low cloud bases and low level shear in the cumulus being torn apart, I said to the group that the SPC might be underplaying this day somewhat. After arriving near Enid TCU Towers were building near Oakwood and we set off towards Canton where we got our first view of the storms developing. We headed west towards Oakwood and noticed a storm on the southern end which was stationery, a very big clue to a Supercell riding the boundary and becoming the dominant storm of the day much like the Goodland Supercell from 1 week previous. Our first look at the storm from the South was of a stunning Classic Supercell with a ground scrubbing wall cloud, not long after the picture below the storm gained a Tornado warning.

Positive CG Lightning started to spit out of the storm and rotation picked up with strong inflow winds from the SE.

The radar at this time also was showing an anchored Supercell on the boundary unfortunately darkness was rapidly approaching making photography hard.

When the above radar grabs were taken a Large Tornado was being reported 7 miles south of Putnam and we managed to get a shot when the Lightning lit up the base showing the tornado on the ground.

Shortly after the above picture we headed west towards Custer City to try and get in front of the Tornado and with Tornado Sirens blaring through town we made a run for the North to South Highway and south towards Elk City but the Storm increased its forward speed from 5mph to 30mph cutting us off and with a very big strong couplet just a mile to our west we turned back for safety with a rain wrapped tornado on the ground this was the safest option.

The grabs above from Car 2 showing this was a wise decision. After the above we headed south to Weatherford and rode out 85mph hurricane force winds at a gas station to end the day. Tornado number 5 for Tour 4 and very happy guests once again.

 

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