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Anything outdoors!  Tornadoes, eagles, blizzards, or auroras.  If it is in the sky, running through the woods or swimming in the water, I'm there!


Thursday, June 12, 2008

June 11 Onawa IA storm and boy scout disaster

Will post a lot more later. Kinda shook about the whole boy scout camp disaster yesterday as Cullen and I spent a couple of hours in Onawa, IA waiting for initiation, jumped on a storm west of Blair, NE then lost it going into the hills east of Salix, IA near Climbing Hill.


As we sat above the bluffs to the north of Blair and west of the airport, I was filming a developing storm to our west when a farmer stopped by just to chat. Made small talk of how wet it has been and made mention of the tornado watch until 10. He said he was going to head home, call his family to let them know and to wait until all of the storms passed to the east before heading back out to work on their projects. I can see a farmer in the field not knowing about the torn box being issued but a scout camp? What was that scout motto again? Always be prepared? Yeah, that's the ticket. Well, having a 4 hour lead time by the issuance of the watch should have given the responsible ADULTS plenty of time to get prepared. The 4 deaths and 4 score something injuries could have been avoided using a little common sense. I'm sure the individuals responsible for those deaths are carrying a heavy weight today...and they deserve EVERY LAST OUNCE OF IT.

Anyhow, kept hopping cells going east as they would move quickly northeast. 95% of the action area would get rain wrapped extremely quickly. Had a hairy moment south southeast of Cherokee, IA as we ended up way too close to the circulation. Everything was going up for the most part at our location as we measured inflow winds up 68mph out of the south east which quickly changed to the south then came the wet RFD at 74 mph out of the west/southwest totally obscuring our vision as the cell raced off to the northeast. I hate chasing embedded cells and this is why. The lack of vision. Threaded our way between cells up 15 and back into MN but not before hitting spot where the road was under water by a few inches and having a couplet form right over us in West Bend, IA which had us CRAWLING forwards in the dark along the back side of a torn warned storm. Have a ton of video to go through but not sure how much of it is any good due to the extreme HP nature of these storms.

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