Saturday, August 15, 2009

07/28/2009-Sweet Lightning Show: Thorntown, IN

NB: ( I Havent been here to update for such a long time, again. This is just because life gets in the way. Anyway, I have taken it upon myself to try and make my blog a little more exciting to read by adding a touch of creative writing to my posts, as having sat there and read through my past entries, I have found them a bit dull, descriptively. I hope this new approach works: You will have to let me know. )


I had been watching some rogue cells on radar in the northern part of the state for a good portion of the afternoon. I was trying to resist the urge to meet them as they didn't really show any signs of moving south.
They seemed to be drifting East without much southern motion, at first, but on a susequent radar check a little later, there were many more cells popping up, tempting me to head north and greet them.

They had grown in size and there were hail core signatures beginning to appear with some of them.

It became too much, the decision to chase was made.We headed I65 north!On route, beautiful cumulonimbus towered overhead, around and above us... Teasing my mind all the way!

(Heading up I74 North)
These were not yet seen on radar, but had my attention anyway, promising me good things would come. Thoughts of impending powerful storms came to me as we continued to travel, thoughts of lightning sweeping the dark sky and hail, with rotating wall clouds... And...The quiet hope and anticipation of an unexpected but unlikely tornado?We continued as the skies in front of us began to darken, but little structure was to be seen!

Not even a shelf cloud, I quickly realized that this maybe bust. One streak of lightning and ten minutes later, we drove through rain! My dissappointment was quite apparent! These promising cells had began to dissipate as they moved slowly south east. We headed south back through Delphi, and began to drive to head for home... I began to think there probably wouldn't be anymore storms tonight...

I looked at the radar, in exasperation, at the green mess that had once been a collection of beautifully shaped dark red images of convection, gazing at me tempting me only an hour before... I then looked at the sky, with its dreary grey overcast rain, and another lump reached my throat-I hate this storm-killing State! I HAVE to move!

We drove back out into the dry airmass which warmed us as we opened the windows once more, and I gazed wistfully at the cumulus that still continued to grace the sky... Warm air rushing into the truck.The radar now showed me a line of cells to the west of the state, in the Crawfordsville area.

( The color of the skies were beautiful, despite the unsuccessful cells in the Delphi area)

...I shouted out "Crawfordsville-can we get there in less than 20 minutes?"My husband/chase partner said "we can try..."

We headed south, then west, and I kept my eyes open and watched the sky....It began to darken once more as the line of cells slowly made their way east...My excitement and anticipation began to build once more, as we drove as fast as we legally could to intercept this now growing cell, which was showing a heavy rain core, and no signs of weakening.

We entered the small town of Thorntown, and a few flashes in the sky brought me positive thoughts that this time I would meet a good storm, I was excited to embrace this darkness...

We drove underneath its dark blanket, and soon, CG began to hit the ground around and ahead of us.
A beautiful and enchanting sight.

Exhilaration filled me, and adrenaline, as we saw the huge shelf cloud coming over the horizon.To me, this is the most beautiful sight in the world. We pulled over onto the side of the road, and stopped the engine,

I wanted to hear the thunder.
The radio was turned off, and the only sound for miles around was a light breeze and rumbling thunder in the distance. It was such a calming sound, yet thrilling at the same time.
The gust front winds began to whip around the cabin and make my hair fly in the warm breeze...
The lightning became much more frequent. The shelf was almost overhead now, and with awe we watched it roll overhead.It may not have been reported as a severe storm, we didn't know.

(The rain filled skies darken, we lose daylight, as the storm closes in right over us)

My cell phone radar had crapped out, as it likes to do when we intercept a storm, and I had not brought the laptop.
This is how I sometimes like to chase. I don't often want to be ensconced in so much of the techy side of chasing. I want to see what nature wants to show me, after my patient searches...

Raw energy from mother nature came crashing around us as the thunder became louder, and the rain began to fall... And OH BOY, the rain FELL.
Quickly we closed the windows. Its Gilgamesh! The curtain of precipitation was like a grey wall that now covered everything that we had seen in front of us, the only other visual element at that time is the CG lightning, flickering all around.
Exhilaration overtook me, as the crack of thunder boomed around the truck cabin.

It was as though we could feel it rumble beneath us! An amazing but unnerving this was followed by another bright CG which hit the ground less than quarter of a mile away from our position!
The storm was right on top of us, and the rain was as strong as it had been when it first began to fall.

For a good 20 minutes this storm sat on top of us, throwing CG all around us, providing us with a fabulous show...We sat as daylight quickly dissappeared, and contnued to watch this storms beautiful lightning show.

Mesmerized, and extremely happy, I gazed into the dark chasm of the storm, as the thunder roared around us, and the lightning kept on lighting up around us. What a beautiful sight! I could have sat back and watched this all night...I wished so much to get out the truck, and be right inside the storm, but I knew it was far too dangerous, with this much lightning.

It was so tempting, but I told myself no! We contnued to sit in the cabin, as the rain continued to beat the windshield, and the roof, and the thunder contnued to crack and rumble in our presence.
This storm truly wanted to give us a show, it seemed to know that we were enjoying every moment. It seemed to be playing up to that!
Another half an hour passed us by, and the stationary storm cell finally began to abate, and slowly head east. The rain began to die down, yet the lightning and thunder continued to surround us, albeit less frequent.
We began to drive on a bit, as it began to settle down some... Soon the rain was no more, and the cell began to deplete.
We headed south, and stopped for some food, then we picked up the interstate (I 74) back to the Metro, to head for home,
I watched the now rather infrequent distant lightning in the dark skies, miles to our north, on our left, as we drove home, thanking Mother Nature for fullfilling my desire for storms that night...

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