Friday, July 03, 2009

The world's longest driveway, aka the road to nowhere

We started off in Spearfish again, targeting Chadron, NE. Storms once again went early, and we ended up going after a pretty nice outflow-dominant severe-warned storm northeast of Hot Springs, SD. We got some pictures and then got together for some data, and we took off to the south.

That's where things got fun. The storm had kicked out an outflow that was blasting eastward quickly, almost keeping ahead of us; we did finally get to a storm in the good air, but we were on the wrong side of it; the Nebraska sand hills aren't good for roads, either, so we had to go farther east than we wanted. We finally got a road south--something sort of sketchily named like Road 16-spur, but our GPSs and maps indicated that it was a good road.

Along the way, the storm decided to look STUPID good! Some called the partially-obscured wall cloud the "foot of God". Not that that region would have much to stomp.

Getting there:
After going through the national forest and getting onto "better" roads, we crossed a cattleguard and sloshed on some gravel/dirt. Where there were cattle. Chase 1 had to stop, idle for a bit, and even honk. The cattle (a mother and her calf) looked at the van indignantly until the second honk, when they finally looked with contempt at the vans. Then banging on the windshield finally got them moving and got out of the way. The calf took off down the road; not off the road, but down the road. And then eventually went. Oh, did I fail to mention that we passed not one, but 2 slow-moving (VERY slow-moving) vehicles on the way? So when we got close to the highway we were seeking, the road ended. I'm not kidding. It just ended. No fanfare, no signs, no nothing; just a house there and befuddled people wondering what the heck 4 vans full of people and festooned in antennae was doing in their driveway. Their driveway, for heaven's sake! We just drove about 30 miles along what was essentially a driveway for 4 houses. The second vehicle we had passed eventually came along and told Chase 3 how he knew he'd be seeing us again, chuckling to himself.

By this time, the storm started to die and nothing else was worth chasing.

We went to Valentine, where we are having an ... ahem ... unwinding party, for the night.

We're all in good spirits because that's a really great story, the kind of story we're going to remember for a long time.

Well, that and the fact that tomorrow looks pretty good. Here's hoping. Target (right now): HA, you thought I'd give it up?!


At 12:10 AM, Blogger nancyv said...

Were you the guys in Watford City ND on Monday night (June 29th) ? saw you at the cenex?

At 8:42 AM, Blogger Weather Central said...

Yup, that was us! :)

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At 1:23 AM, Blogger Braylen Johnson said...

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