Thursday, December 2, 2010

Help me win a 3 free nights in Jamaica!

For those of you on Facebook, please "like" my photo. Contest closes the 10th at 9 am and I could win a free 3 night stay in Jamaica. All you have to do is like "Secrets Wild Orchid" at this page: and then "like" my photo here:


Here is the photo you are voting on:

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Winter has arrived for the Southern Plains

We had a sorta unexpected snow storm in the Panhandle. Most the models had very little snow or mostly no snow around Amarillo. That was a little off as we recieved nearly 5 inches, which I slept through most. It was a very heavy snow from what I saw for the few minutes I was awake, which aided in such a high total for the barely freezing temps and the short period it snowed. Most of the trees around here were stilled loaded with leaves, when combined with that heavy, wet snow it made the area look like a ice storm had slammed the area. Trees of all sizes were missing limbs all over town, which caused power loses to about 5000 people.

The other side to that storm that is interesting is that it came in a La Nina year. For the Panhandle it normally means warmer temps and less precip, which equals less snow for an area that averages less than 20 inches per year as it is. So not only was it an early snow storm for around here, but it came in a year that we shouldn't expect much as it is. So much for expectations.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Summer has definitely left!

Walked out to a chill in the air this morning in Amarillo and realized fall had finally made its debut. Severe weather does not look likely anytime soon on the GFS, but hopefully the southern plains can get one decent setup this fall before its too late. If not, it is going be a long winter.

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Busy week ahead!

I will be leaving early in the morning for one last chase trip of the season. Headed towards Goodland, KS to start off tomorrow. Will be heading to Denver Tuesday for a Rockies-Astros game and then more chasing the next few days after that. If I can find time to visit Yellowstone or any other National Park, I definitely will. I will be working on chase reports all summer with all that has happened this year. I think we all got way more than we asked for this year and hopefully V2 atleast got something to show for it.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Long Overdue Update

I will be posting some pictures and videos of the tornadoes I have bagged in the past few weeks. I am completely worn out from all the chasing and slowly seperating myself from most of the chasing world, not that I didnt kinda do that already. The past few weeks have been the longest of my life. May 10th I ended up in the broad circulation of the Wakita tornado, because I made a poor choice of position and when to move with 60 mph storm motions. Tree branches and sheet metal go flying past me in my video. There is no telling what was flying beside me (my windows were covered in mud). Since then it has either been non-stop tornadoes or hard core busts. I am afraid to calculate all the miles I have driven. When you go through 5 states in one day it will really add up. Keep an eye for photos and video real soon. I have taken some of the best photos of my life in the last week so I atleast have something to show for it.

Friday, April 2, 2010

Upcoming Chase on April 5?

The models have yet to nail anything down and come to a good concensus. The GFS and NAM do show pretty good potential from the triple point and down the dryline. The NAM is not showing and precip while the GFS has a small area on the OK/KS border. Truthfully the cap along the dryline looks very breakable. If the models are close to being right, then I expect to see atleast a storm along the dryline and definitely something near the triple point. It also has the same chances of being a blue sky bust. I will definitely try and post a more detailed write up Sunday when I have a better idea what to expect. My bet is I will be in KS somewhere on Monday.

Sunday, March 28, 2010


The conditions are finally coming together for the 1st decent setup of the year. The most important part is the pattern change that is bringing a big trough into the west and starting some decent return flow off the gulf. Though the return flow still remains a big question, though it seems 60 degree dew points are likely. The NAM is faster with this return of 60's a whole 2 days before the event (about 500 miles further inland at 84 hrs). That can make a big difference.

Here is the 500mb at 12z (6am)from the GFS on the first potential day at this point, April 2nd.

Also here is the GFS dew points that evening 0z.

My bigggest issue I have at this point is the 500mb winds are due north across most of the warm sector which isnt yeild very good wind profiles and is parallel to the dryline, which will surely result in crapvection. The only target that seems reasonable at this point would be Fredricksburg, TX (San Antonio in TX hill country... booo). I am hoping for atleast a decent chance with this first wave. The GFS has been consistant in keeping this pattern in place after this storm with more setups after this one with better moisture in place. These potential second setups have more SW flow which is much more conducive of isolated development.

The most important thing is the season is HERE!

I have bought a bunch of new toys to try out this year including some video stream enhancements. I am going to have an icon on so you can see which way I am traveling at the time the video is taking. It may even be work good enough to show which way I am facing when I am not moving (or atleast the last know direction of movement). I also bought some new mounting options for my laptop and cameras. My stream camera can now be turn and moved around very easy. I also bought laptop mount for my Saturn Ion so I can chase the targets further away with less concerns about gas prices (32mpg compared to 17mpg from the Jeep). I had to buy a camera mount attachment so I can stream from my Ion, which arrives this week. I cant wait to test it out. My biggest improvement might be the Verizon data card to go along with the amp and antenna I already had. My stream stability should be improved greatly.

I am just ready for the chase to be on!

Friday, March 26, 2010

Dark side of Ebay - michiganative

99% of my Ebay transactions have gone smoothly, but this is the case of another one that didnt. It always seems to be the ones over $100. This jack nut - michiganative -, sent me a computer that had a bad hard drive, but would power on (supposedly). Well, it didnt. The lights would flash on and turn right back off. After a slow week of emails he finally agrees to a refund. I ship it back and wait a few weeks for him to figure it out. I continuously email him asking for my refund to no avail. After having the computer some time he claims the case is cracked and it is worth less now because of the crack (not that it was worth anything cause it didnt work) and that he can only give a partial refund. It has been over 2 months now and I have not even got a partial refund. I got screwed by ebay and their very short time periods to file a claim because this guy dragged everything out so far. So now thanks to this guy and Ebay, I am out a couple hundred bucks and dont even have the broke computer to show for it.

As much as I like ebay, you have to be very careful who you buy from and be sure to know exactly what all you can do and when you can do it.

Monday, March 22, 2010

New Season

As the 2010 season starts to kick into gear I am going to try and update this blog on a more regular basis before and after events. If anything to help me with my forecasting and to learn from mistakes. I am going to try to do some hand analysis on the day of the event when possible. I did farely well on my forecast last year, but blew it on a couple others and want to minimize those type of days where ever possible.

Here's to hoping the season is so crazy that even when you bust a forecast you still bag some naders.