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May 26, 2014: South Texas Tornadic Supercells

As noted with some of our other posts from 2014, due to a missing backpack that contained a hard drive, we’ve lost the majority of the photographs and videos that we collected during the 2014 storm season.  There were several tornado photos on the hard drive, which what hurts the most.  We even lost a van window due to small debris, there were no injuries, we were not in the van at the time (read below).  The few photos that we have been able to post here are photos that we posted to social media prior to the hard drive missing.  Some of these are just screenshots of our radar application showing our GPS icon in the vicinity of tornado warned storms.  It’s possible that we might find a photo here and there on a CF card that we’ve missed, if so, we’ll update the 2014 posts as necessary.

May 26: This day took us deep into south Texas, an unusual event for late May.  Once in the target area for the day, storms quickly formed and almost immediately became tornado warned.  We intercepted two tornadoes, both were rain wrapped.  Brian made the decision to punch the core of a massive supercell in order to get into the notch of the storm for a better look.  The storm was moving primarily in a southerly direction, we spent the evening staying ahead of it by a few miles until we eventually ran out of land – we had three possible options: 1. Go to Mexico, 2. Ditch the van in the Gulf of Mexico and take a swim, or 3: Find a sturdy building and ride out the storm.  We of course choose option three.  We parked the van outside a well constructed restaurant in a small town and well, we ordered dinner.  Thankfully the plates made it to the table just as the power went out and the sky turned black.  A weak tornado passed our location by nearly a block, in due process, some gravel and debris took out a van window.  We decided to just eat during this event, due to the amount of rain, visibility was limited to about six feet.  And yes, the food was terrific after a long chase day!