Tornado near Clayton, NM

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Storm Chase Details

Chase Date: May 26, 2019
Chase Partners:

Chasers Encountered:

Miles Logged: 787
States Chased: NM, TX
Tornadoes Witnessed: 1
Largest Hail Encountered: 1"
First New Mexico tornado

Severe Risks: SPC Outlooks

Chase Recap:

Started the day in Pampa, TX and went to Lake Meredith and the Alibates Flint Quarries National Monument for NPS stamps first before heading to Dumas and then north on 287 with an original target of Campo, CO. Storms had started firing in a clearing area to the northwest.

I pretty quickly realized that the cooled/dreary air with clouds to the southeast of that Colorado target, along with shear vectors would make the north play a little messier. I sat in Stratford for a bit then headed towards Dalhart. Clearing along the mountains by the dryline in New Mexico had commenced and a single storm had fired right along the mountains near Las Vegas, NM.

I continued along US87 to intercept near Capulin Volcano National Monument. I also got my NPS stamp there, but the outside air temperature was in the 50’s. Penny sized hail fell, and I drove around the little loop through Folsom, NM before heading back southeast to more storms firing.

I headed south at Greenville to drop to the new storms that were forming, including one with a TORNADO: Possible tag on the severe wearning. I got down to US412 and sat watching multiple updraft areas before the western one to my location started spinning and dropped a funnel which briefly touched down. I was in great position and repositioned during it to get west of it as the funnel and updraft pretty much dissipated as its inflow was being cut off from the bigger storm to the east.

So back up 412 I managed to snap a couple pics of the storm then headed through town and back out 87. Unfortunately I was too far behind to get into a good position to see the storm, and from radar it was hard to tell if there was rotation. I ended up heading back to Texline and getting gas at allsups, before continuing on to Dalhart.

South of Dalhart I got back into a line of storms that was tornado warned and managed to see a gustnado or even QLCS tornado.

That was the last of my excitement for the day, dropping to Dumas and then Amarillo and getting out ahead of the line and returning to Norman. I arrived home a little after 1am.