Jen Henderson shot this image from the lead van showing the Beaver County OK tornado roaring down the back roads in the rural parts of the Oklahoma panhandle behind the VT storm chasers. This was a great intercept: we targeted developing cells in TX rather than those further north in OK and KS. Noting the developing cumulus field, we moved westward to be in place should any cells develop on the northeast-to-southwest oriented boundary.
Cells began firing in the northern Texas Panhandle, and we moved just east of their northeast-bound path, and witnessed storms fire, become severe-warned, and then tornado-warned right before our eyes. We were truly in an ideal spot, and had the entire storm to ourselves for a long, long time. The wall cloud became better defined over time, and easterly winds began racing into the wall cloud. A dark gray funnel spun down from the lowering and began to grow into a stout cone-shaped tornado. The tornado became wrapped in rain and hail, and we thought we had seen the show come to an end as far as the tornado was concerned. Shortly afterward, the tornado spun out of the rain, barreling down the same rural road we were on. Video cams running, several students filmed the tornado as we kept pace ahead of it before it finally passed north of the road and wrapped in rain a second time. More on this storm intercept later when we have a chance to work on some of the video. -Dave