Chase Date: February 27, 2011
Miles Logged: 382
States Chased: OK, KS
Largest Hail Encountered: 1.25"
Severe Risks: SPC Outlooks
Not much was expected of this chase, but it was the first good ‘chase’ day of the season. Temps warmed into the mid 70’s in Central Oklahoma, and it really felt like “spring” had returned. Being a Sunday, I didn’t have to work.
I spent most of the morning dealing with Verizon to get my aircards activated. It turned out that the one was just broken and the other was reported lost or stolen, so I had no air card. I managed to get one to work for a bit briefly, but it stopped working quickly thereafter.
There was one main storm, and everyone was on it. My first glimpses of the storm were west of Enid. At that time, the storm was very disorganized. The base was suboptimal for tornado production.
I managed to get screwed again with Streets and Trips, and ended up taking a road that ended into a field. This time I didn’t have a tornado bearing down on me, so I was able to back track a few miles and continue on.
The storm really started to show some organization between Medford and I-35. Nearing I-35, I stopped to film and let it catch up to me. Unfortunately that would be a fatal mistake for this chase.
I proceeded across I-35 and through Blackwell. Never managed to get in front of the storm again. Being February, it looked very ragged and like it was outflow dominant. Somewhere northeast of Blackwell I decided to call the chase.
The National Weather Service issued a tornado warning on the storm, so I found myself trying to get back on the storm. It would go on to produce a tornado in Grainola, but I was too far behind.
I gave up at the KS/OK border, but should have really given up sooner.
Tornado reports came in to my east, but I didn’t really even care too much. It was a good successful first chase of 2011.