Chase Date: May 10, 2015
Alec Scholten, Shanda Hinnant, Brittany Randolph, Chrystal Ceniza
Miles Logged: 672
States Chased: TX
Tornadoes Witnessed: 1
Largest Hail Encountered: 1"
Severe Risks: SPC Outlooks
Sleep or Chase?
It was Sunday morning after a long week of chasing. I started off the day thinking perhaps the morning convection had blown the day. Nonetheless, I managed to get Bart woken up and on the road to come pick me up in Norman. I was without a car, but thought we’d miss tornadoes if we didn’t go. Initial target was near Waco.
Of course we’re chasing
We were behind the curve all morning. Neither of us had anything to eat, so we made a plan to stop in Sanger. Bart dropped me off at the Jack in the Box, and then filled his truck up. I got food and was ready to go about the time he was done filling the car up. Operation “full bellies, full tank” was successful.
As we headed south towards Texas Motor Speedway on I-35W, we got off at the 114 exit. A quick funnel or tornado was observed almost immediately upon arrival. The tornado would have been due west of us along TX-114.
Denton Texas Tornado
The circulation crossed I-35W just north of Crawford Rd. We exited the freeway at Crawford and took it to US-377. As we turned north onto 377, we almost immediately intercepted the Denton, Texas tornado. The tornado crossed the road in front of us, bringing down power lines and trees.
We quickly realized we’d never be able to keep up. With that in mind, we made the decision to bail south after making sure there was no severe damage.
As we headed south, the storm near Hillsboro seemed like the next obvious target. We got to Hillsboro and refueled before heading southwest. The next storm was just north of Clifton to the west.
The next 2 hours was spent staying in the hook of the storm. The roads were less than ideal. The storm had some impressive wall cloud formations and wrap-ups, but no tornado.
We finally got caught by roads and traffic as we approached I-35. We gave up, bailing south towards Waco.
We met up with Alec and Shanda and their tour in Waco for steak dinner before the long drive back to Norman. The reports of flooding along the way were worrisome, but it turns out flooding was not so bad.