Saturday, May 21, was a long day of travel in search of severe storms. We rolled out of Great Bend, Kan., by 11 a.m. Our first opportunity developed as a cell began to fire up around 4 p.m. in north central Kansas. During our chase we stopped several times to observe the skies and take photos.
A “super cell” developed moving northeast towards Topeka in the early evening. We did get an opportunity to view this developing tornado near the town of Pauline, Kan., southwest of Topeka. This would be the closest we would get to see a tornado on Day 5.
We did continue to pursue the ‘super cells” well into the late evening, making frequent stops to photograph the clouds and lightning show Mother Nature was presenting before our eyes. We finally arrived at our motel at midnight. Saturday totaled 20 tornadoes throughout the Midwest, the highest count since early May.
I would like to introduce you to another member of our storm-chasing team.
"My name is Darren Lo and I hail from Reston, Va., in the Washington, D.C., area. I am trained as a mathematician and currently work at a small consulting firm specializing in Bayesian probability and statistics. Since my days as an impressionable youth in the upper Midwest, I have always been interested in tornadoes, although I never had a chance to pursue that interest in any meaningful manner. I chose to join this tour not just for the possibility of seeing tornadoes, but also for the chance to get a firsthand look at how storm chasers think and operate."