Russell, KS Tornado May 25, 2012
Date: 25 May 2012
Location: Russell, KS
Summary: I left Denver on her first chase in the early afternoon with a target near Hays, KS. While enroute storms began to fire near Hays and track NE. I opted to get off in WaKeeney and head up to Hill City and then try to intercept them between Plainville and Lucas. As the storms interacted with the front they stalled out right at I-70, so when I reached Plainville, I headed straight for Lucas where I intercepted a TOR warned storm just north of Lake Wilson. I watched this storm for about 10 minutes and then proceeded to head south to I-70 and then back west to intercept the next storm in the line forming south of Russell. I got off at Bunker Hill and went south about 5 miles, then headed back west. I stopped SE of Russell and watched the 2nd storm to our north head off to the NE. Meanwhile to our immediate west, another storm was going up and exhibited some excellent rotation on GRL3 as well as visually. As I watched it looked as thought the meso farthest west was starting to dissipate, while there was a new meso forming on the SE flank of what I thought was the occluding meso. I were in the perfect spot for the newly forming meso…..however, the old meso wasn’t quite finished as suddenly a gorgeous tornado appeared. After the tornado roped out, I waited in vain for the new meso to produce. Wicked CG’s began striking within a mile of our location and forced us back into the truck. New storms began firing down near LaCrosse and were producing numerous tornadoes. I headed to intercept a TOR warned storm near Loretta, KS after dark. We set up shop a little further to the east and began taking open shutter exposures. They were revealing a very low hanging wall cloud. Numerous tornado sightings were being reported with this storm. One of the exposures show a cone shaped funnel and a skinny rope funnel on the right side of the meso. Cannot confirm either one of these funnels as a tornado, but they are obvious funnels. I chased this storm up til it pretty much died out near Pfeifer, KS.