STORM DOCUMENTATION - 1998
Copyright 2005 Eric Nguyen
 
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UNK = UNKNOWN
 
 
DATE AREA OBSERVATIONS
980225-1b.jpg (8240 bytes)
FEB 25, 1998
N TX A PHOTOGENIC WALLCLOUD SHOT TOWARDS DUSK.  COPIOUS AMOUNTS OF HAIL WAS OBSERVED.
MARCH 4, 1998 N TX NOTHING SIGNIFICANT WAS OBSERVED.
MARCH 18, 1998 N TX ONLY HIGH BASED CONVECTION.
MARCH 30, 1998 S OK PDS TORNADO WATCH ISSUED, HOWEVER, ONLY A MARGINALLY SEVERE SQUALL LINE FORMED.  SOME QUARTER SIZED HAIL, AND STRONG WINDS WERE OBSERVED.  PEAK WIND GUST OF 56MPH WAS RECORDED.
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APRIL 6, 1998
NW TX / SW OK INTERESTING LOW-TOPPED SUPERCELL WAS OBSERVED.  GOLF BALL HAIL WHICH DAMAGED THE ANEMOMETER AND SEVERAL BRIEF WALL CLOUDS/FUNNELS WERE OBSERVED ALONG THE RED RIVER.
APRIL 8, 1998 UNK NOTHING SIGNIFICANT WAS OBSERVED.
APRIL 14, 1998 C OK ANOTHER VERY PHOTOGENIC SUPERCELL.  RAPIDLY ROTATING WALL CLOUD WITH BRIEF DUSTY OUTFLOW SPIN-UPS WERE OBSERVED.
APRIL 24, 1998 UNK NOTHING SIGNIFICANT WAS OBSERVED.
APRIL 25, 1998 UNK NOTHING SIGNIFICANT WAS OBSERVED.
APRIL 26, 1998 UNK NOTHING SIGNIFICANT WAS OBSERVED.
MAY 2, 1998 UNK NOTHING SIGNIFICANT WAS OBSERVED.
MAY 5, 1998 N TX VERY UNSTABLE ATMOSPHERE AND A DRYLINE BULGE WAS THE FOCUS.  CAP NEVER BROKE.
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MAY 8, 1998
W TX SOME VERY INTENSE SUPERCELLS IN WEST TEXAS.  LARGE HAIL AND BRIEF WALLCLOUDS WERE OBSERVED.   STORMS MAINLY OF THE HP VARIETY WERE OBSERVED.  MY VEHICLE WAS STRUCK BY LIGHTNING IN JACK COUNTY AT 10PM.  THIS DISABLED THE VEHICLE AND THE TOW GUY DIDN'T SHOW UP UNTIL 3AM!!
MAY 14, 1998 UNK NOTHING SIGNIFICANT WAS OBSERVED.
MAY 24, 1998 W TX ORIGINAL TARGET WAS OK PAN.  DUE TO LIMITED TIME, I WENT TO W TX.  NOTHING SIGNIFICANT OBSERVED
MAY 25, 1998 W TX SOME STORMS FORMED, BUT NOTHING SIGNIFICANT OBSERVED.
MAY 26, 1998 SW TX SOME VERY STRONG SLOW MOVING SUPERCELLS NEAR MIDLAND, TX.  A WALLCLOUD WAS OBSERVED BEFORE OCCLUDING.
JUNE 4, 1998 UNK NOTHING SIGNIFICANT WAS OBSERVED.
JUNE 5, 1998 N TX NOTHING SIGNIFICANT WAS OBSERVED.
JUNE 7, 1998
SE CO / E NM I GOT SUCKERED INTO THE OKLAHOMA PANHANDLE.  NOTHING SIGNIFICANT OBSERVED.
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JUNE 8, 1998
W OK / C OK MULTIPLE LONG-LIVED SUPERCELLS OVER CENTRAL OKLAHOMA.   MANY WALLCLOUDS AND SOME MODERATE HAIL WAS OBSERVED.  I MISSED A FEW TORNADOES BY A MATTER OF MINUTES DUE TO DEBRIS BLOCKING MY PATH.
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JUNE 9, 1998
NW TX A VERY INTENSE HP SUPERCELL WHICH PRODUCED A POSSIBLE BRIEF TOUCHDOWN JUST BEFORE OCCLUDING.  THE OUTFLOW WAS SO STRONG IT PUSHED A SPOTTERS VEHICLE INTO A DITCH.   AFTER THAT IT WAS JUST A MAJOR OUTFLOW BOUNDARY.
JUNE 17, 1998 W KS POTENTIAL FOR A BIG DAY.   TARGET WAS DODGE CITY, KS.  A TORNADO WATCH WAS ISSUED FOR STORMS ALONG THE DRYLINE, BUT NOTHING SIGNIFICANT OCCURRED AS THE STORMS RAPIDLY WEAKENED AND THE CAP HELD.
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JUNE 20, 1998
W OK SOME PHOTOGENIC LP / CLASSIC SUPERCELLS IN W OK.  ALSO SOME EVENING SUNSET TOWER SHOTS.
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JUNE 21, 1998
N OK A GORGEOUS SUPERCELL WITH SOME AWESOME MAMMATUS!
JUNE 22, 1998 UNK NOTHING SIGNIFICANT WAS OBSERVED.
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JULY 17, 1998
N TX A VERY INTENSE PULSE STORM FORMED TO MY WEST.  I TOOK A FEW SHOTS OF A STRONG DOWNBURST WHICH CAUSE A LOT OF DAMAGE IN BLUEMOUND, TX.
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AUGUST 7, 1998
N TX SOME PHOTOGENIC SEVERE STORMS.
SEPTEMBER 24, 1998 UNK NOTHING SIGNIFICANT WAS OBSERVED.
SEPTEMBER 25, 1998 UNK NOTHING SIGNIFICANT WAS OBSERVED.
SEPTEMBER 30, 1998 UNK NOTHING SIGNIFICANT WAS OBSERVED.
OCTOBER 1, 1998 NW TX NO SIGNIFICANT CONVECTION OCCURRED.
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OCTOBER 2, 1998
W TX A VERY EXCITING CHASE OF SOME RAGING AND OCCASIONALLY TORNADIC SUPERCELLS.  A FEW LONG LIVED WALLCLOUDS, BRIEF FUNNELS, AND SOME MODERATE HAIL WAS OBSERVED.  THIS PICTURE SHOWS SOME WEAK TORNADO DAMAGE THAT OCCURRED NEAR WEATHERFORD, TEXAS.
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OCTOBER 3, 1998
W TX I WATCHED SOME LATE EVENING HP SUPERCELLS WHILE THE NWS WAS PERFORMING DAMAGE SURVEY'S FROM THE PREVIOUS DAY'S STORMS.  NO SIGNIFICANT CONVECTION OCCURRED.
981004-11b.jpg (14160 bytes)
OCTOBER 4, 1998
W OK / C OK AN OUTBREAK OF TORNADIC SUPERCELLS OCCURRED.  WE CHASED THE WATONGA SUPERCELL SINCE ITS BIRTH.  WE SAW THREE TORNADOES FROM THAT STORM, AND CAUGHT OUR FORTH TORNADO IN MOORE, OK, AFTER DARK.
OCTOBER 5, 1998 N TX NWS WAS CALLING FOR AN OUTBREAK OF TORNADIC SUPERCELLS, NO SEVERE STORMS FORMED AT ALL.
OCTOBER 16, 1998 OK PAN A DECENT SHOT AT COLD CORE TORNADIC STORMS, HOWEVER WE MISSED THE LARGE TORNADO JUST NORTH OF US IN SOUTHWEST KANSAS.
OCTOBER 17, 1998 W TX A PHOTOGENIC SQUALL LINE QUICKLY FORMED.
NOVEMBER 9, 1998 UNK NOTHING SIGNIFICANT WAS OBSERVED.
DECEMBER 1998 UNK NOTHING SIGNIFICANT WAS OBSERVED.

 

 

APRIL 6, 1998

Area Chased:  NW TX / SW OK

Discussion: I woke up at 6am anticipating severe weather, and to prepare my forecast. I had two areas of concern, the western Kansas and Oklahoma border where shear was good, but the lack of moisture was bothering me. Another area of concern was all along the Oklahoma/Texas borders on the western Red River Valley. Dew points were higher and decent convergence was expected.    I headed north to 62 in S OK and went west toward Altus.  At 2pm, SPC issued a tornado watch for eastern Texas panhandle, western Oklahoma, and western north Texas. After driving through some showers I got back into a cloudless sky and noticed some towers to my west on the dryline and I saw another rather weak storm to my SSW. I headed south toward that storm, which was the only one for miles. After heading down 283 from Altus, Oklahoma, I entered Texas and passed Vernon, Texas. The storm was looking more organized and some rotation was observed.  As the hail picked up, I drove a little farther down the farm road and noticed my freshly paved farm road began to change to a not so smooth two-lane road. Then it just dead-ended in a deep muddy pit. I went west toward the storm and was hoping to find a northbound road, but it was too late. The hail shaft got me and began pounding me with quarter sized hail, then up to half dollar size. The winds finally subsided and the golf balls calmed down. I looked at my anemometer and it was broken.  I filmed a little of the disorganized rotation and headed west to 283, took 283 north, and 287 east. The storm was headed NE so I took 183 into Oklahoma and east on 70. The flanking line had a very smooth look to it. Inflow to the storm wasn't great but it was a beauty. I followed the storm until I hit Hwy 35 where I went south towards home. It continued to cause severe thunderstorm warnings.

Pictures: 

980406-1b.jpg (12871 bytes)     980406-2b.jpg (10533 bytes)      Here is when the storm passed over me looking east at the flanking line and hail shaft below.
MAY 8, 1998

Area Chased:  W TX

Discussion: What a day as far as weather goes, but for me it was the worst chase day of my life. I left around 11am and got to Abilene around 3pm and waited.  I tried continuously to get some info via satellite but the winds were just to strong.  Gust of 40+mph were measured.  After that I went outside to see two huge towers going up.  Mammatus were already over head showing the EXPLOSIVE nature of these towers. A tornado warning was issued ten minutes after the first glimpse of the building tower.  As the Tornado warning went out I got out of my car to mount my camera, as I did so, the inflow shut the door and locked me out *no idea how it did that* but I was screwed. The tornadic storm was heading for my location as well as possible baseball hail. So, I grabbed the closest object, a shovel, and try breaking the back window.  I tried, the guy tried, and the dang thing wouldn't break!  So he got a jimmy and we broke the lining of the car to roll the windows down with it since the engine was running.  Finally, the chase was on!  I headed north to Throckmorton after the two supercells passed and noticed another supercell to the west of us.  It was huge and putting out a tornado warning.  I met a guy named Dave Fick who was out chasing from Houston.  We stood and waited for the western storm a little, and then headed due south.  It was taking a sharp right turn.  I never made it to the south side, but Dave did as he got base ball hail.  It was non-stop hail and lighting forbidding me from getting any good pictures.  The storms all appeared to be HP.  I encountered the HUGE meso from the Throckmorton storm which supposedly had a rain wrapped tornado. I must have seen 30+ chasers out there!  When I jetted east to catch up to a storm near my home, I was abruptly stopped by mother nature herself. Lighting struck my car scaring the crap out of me, blowing my HAM radio, battery, igniter, etc.  With the igniter fried and barely any battery power left for my emergency flashers, I waited the storms out.  It had just turned dark and a squall line from the advancing dryline/cold front was approaching.   It was a lonely road just 12 miles east of Jacksboro.  It was pouring and I told a couple to phone the police.  Immediately the police, fire truck, ambulance showed up, must have been 6 cops there seeing if I was okay.  At about 2am, the cop came by again to see if I was okay, he had to bang on the window cause I was snoozing.   He offered to call another tow truck and before we could do that, the tow guy finally came.  He was probably more tired than me cause he kept dozing off while driving me to town.  All in all, I paid $600 for new door lining, and window, and the other damage was paid by insurance.  That was the most discouraging chase I have ever been on.

Pictures: 

980508-1b.jpg (7724 bytes)  Here is the leading edge of the RFD gust front SW of the main meso.
 
OCTOBER 4, 1998

Area Chased:  W OK

Discussion:  I targeted Clinton, Oklahoma off of Hwy 40 for the potential for tornadic supercells. I picked up my chase partner from Norman, Oklahoma and we headed west on Hwy 40.  We stopped at Clinton and noticed some towers to our NE around Enid.   We were not to impressed by them as they began to look weak.   We continued to check out data at my favorite "Loves" in Clinton.  A storm developed just south of I40.  It began to organize into a supercell and developed a precipitation core and a lowering.  A tornado warning was issued and after about a half hour this storm appeared to weaken and was not impressing me at all.

Another storm was developing to our southwest.  We were a few miles south of Watonga and decided to wait since this storm looked somewhat impressive and was in the better inflow.  We waited 30-45 minutes watching it go from meso, to wallcloud, to a very large funnel.   At some times, it appeared as though the rotation was strong enough to touch down but the RFD wasn't quite there.  A tornado touched down to the SW of Watonga and lasted briefly.  As the wall cloud loomed closer, another funnel formed which touched down immediately.  We notice a strong RFD this time as the tornado began to intensify.  The tornado crossed right in front of us on 81 doing damage just south of the city of Watonga, OK.  We got some excellent tripoded video of the tornado touching down and uprooting trees as it went east.  We continued chasing eastward and it appeared to change in shape and size rapidly.  We followed it east staying at a relatively safe distance until it roped out.  We then blasted east to get in position for the next tornado.  Another very large meso formed after that and dropped yet another tornado near Dover, Oklahoma.  This one wasn't quite as strong due to the storm weakening a bit.  We got some excellent video and stills of this tornado as it raced NE.  Towards dark we finally gave up and went SE to another storm producing a wall cloud before getting too dark.  We ended our chase and went south to Norman so I could drop off my chase partner.  Many tornado warnings were issued all over central Oklahoma but we ignored them since we were calling it a night.  We were some where between Moore and Norman heading south on Hwy 35 when a wall of winds hit us.  The two cars in front of me stopped and power lines began to pop as debris was flying over the road.  I thought my car would be picked up at any moment and thrown.  The car was shaking very hard and as fast as it came, it was gone.  It happen to be the Moore, OK tornado, a thin rope moving eastward which some filmed from the roof of NSSL.

Pictures:

981004-1b.jpg (12312 bytes)   Here is the storm to my west looking very good.  It was totally isolated, no storms to its south, and I was in perfect position!  We would wait about a half hour for this storm to loom closer to us.  It appears that it would pass just to my north.  We were just south of Watonga in Blaine County, Oklahoma on Hwy 281.
 
981004-2b.jpg (11552 bytes)     981004-3b.jpg (12964 bytes)     The storm began to look a lot more organized.   Rotation was already evident and the storm itself was rotating, with striations and a flared look to its south side.  As it got closer I could already see strong rotation in the storm itself.  At this point, a beavers tail formed extending to my ENE.  After this, rotation picked up and a series of funnels formed and die.
981004-4b.jpg (12937 bytes)     Here is the first tornado SW of Watonga, which Tim Marshal told me about afterward.  Some other chasers were filming this doing some damage to a shed.  Looking due west.
 
981004-5b.jpg (12186 bytes)      Notice the beavers tail, looking to my NNW as the storm continues to amplify.  There was a flared look to the tower itself showing that the entire storm was rotating.  Inflow into the storm began to really pick up.  At the same time, a very long and fast moving inflow tail was developing.  Winds were cranking at over 35mph (measured).
 
981004-6b.jpg (13699 bytes)      981004-7b.jpg (13310 bytes)     Looking at a new funnel to the north which is dropping multiple vortices.  At this time, debris could be seen behind the trees.
 
981004-8b.jpg (13930 bytes)      981004-9b.jpg (13595 bytes)     981004-12b.jpg (13813 bytes)     This is when the RFD really starts to crank.  You can see there is still a clear slot to the left of the tornado and the debris is being pushed to the west.  The condensation is becoming better defined.  At this point, the video we were taking shows large trees being thrown and several seem to just hover in the air and rotate around the tornado.
 
981004-11b.jpg (14160 bytes)     981004-10b.jpg (13783 bytes)       Notice how huge and awesome the meso is!  Very cool storm accompanied both of these tornadoes.  This is looking north on full wide angle.
 
981004-13b.jpg (13555 bytes)     981004-14b.jpg (13963 bytes)     Notice how large it's getting.  In the video, large trees were thrown like tooth picks.  More of a classic cone look right now.
 
981004-15b.jpg (12854 bytes)     981004-16b.jpg (11565 bytes)     981004-17b.jpg (12518 bytes)      It has more of a white appearance now as we look NNE.  On the video, we zoomed in with our camcorder on the debris showing very rapid rotation.  Notice the RFD beginning to wrap around the tornado.
 
981004-18b.jpg (12716 bytes)     You'll have to zoom in on this one, this tornado last a very long time and just would not give up.  This thing was roping for a while and still had a needle touching the ground.  After finally dyeing off, we began to get into position for the intercept of tornado number three.
 
981004-19b.jpg (15538 bytes)      981004-20b.jpg (14941 bytes)      981004-21b.jpg (15774 bytes)      Second tornado touches down.  Notice the very broad rotating mesocyclone and tornado.  Also notice the RFD beginning to wrap around it.  Taken at full wide angle looking north.
 
981004-22b.jpg (14530 bytes)     981004-23b.jpg (15633 bytes)      At this point it had a classic thin cone as it crossed near the city of Dover.
 
981004-24b.jpg (13647 bytes)     Now it is finally roping out becoming rain wrapped.  After this, the storm is still moving around 40mph and is going into bad terrain and a bad road network so we watch the storm fade away to our NE as we head back to interstate 35.
 
Additional Data:
PUBLIC SEVERE WEATHER OUTLOOK
PUBLIC SEVERE WEATHER OUTLOOK
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE KANSAS CITY MO
1030 AM CDT SUNDAY OCTOBER 4, 1998
 
...OUTBREAK OF SEVERE THUNDERSTORMS INCLUDING A FEW STRONG TORNADOES IS EXPECTED OVER PARTS OF THE CENTRAL AND SOUTHERN PLAINS THIS AFTERNOON AND EVENING...
THE STORM PREDICTION CENTER IN NORMAN OKLAHOMA IS FORECASTING AN OUTBREAK OF SEVERE THUNDERSTORMS...WITH A FEW STRONG TORNADOES, DAMAGING WINDS...AND LARGE HAIL OVER PARTS OF THE CENTRAL AND SOUTHERN PLAINS. THE AREAS MOST LIKELY TO EXPERIENCE THIS ACTIVITY INCLUDE:
CENTRAL AND EASTERN KANSAS NORTHERN AND CENTRAL OKLAHOMA
 
A VIGOROUS SPRING-LIKE STORM SYSTEM IS DEVELOPING OVER THE COLORADO ROCKIES THIS MORNING AND WILL MOVE INTO THE CENTRAL PLAINS STATES THIS AFTERNOON. AN INTENSIFYING SURFACE LOW PRESSURE CENTER OVER EASTERN COLORADO WILL MOVE NORTHEASTWARD ACROSS KS AND INTO NEBRASKA TODAY. AS THIS OCCURS...A WARM FRONT WILL MOVE NORTHWARD ACROSS KANSAS ALLOWING VERY MOIST AND UNSTABLE AIR TO OVERSPREAD THE REGION.
 
SEVERE THUNDERSTORMS WILL DEVELOP RAPIDLY THIS AFTERNOON AS THE STRONG UPPER TROUGH AND ITS ASSOCIATED JET STREAM WINDS OF OVER 100 MPH MOVE OVER THE INCREASINGLY UNSTABLE AIR MASS. GIVEN VERY FAVORABLE WIND SHEAR PROFILES AND STRONG UPWARD MOTION ASSOCIATED WITH THE STORM SYSTEM...SUPERCELLS ARE EXPECTED TO DEVELOP. SOME STRONG TORNADOES ARE POSSIBLE ALONG WITH LARGE HAIL AND DAMAGING WIND.
 
THIS IS A POTENTIALLY DANGEROUS WEATHER SITUATION. PERSONS IN THE THREATENED AREAS ARE URGED TO REVIEW SEVERE WEATHER SAFETY RULES...AND LISTEN TO RADIO...TV...OR NOAA WEATHER RADIO FOR LATER WATCHES...WARNINGS AND STATEMENTS.
...MIKE VESCIO...
STORM PREDICTION CENTER
 

LAST UPDATE 7/4/05

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