August 2 2006 Chicago Area Storm Chase

Mar 05, 2012

Well I came home from work early to fix my PC which i had broken the
night before. I knew there was a slight risk on that day but wasn’t too
focused on it till I noticed a promising sign outside my


Cumulonimbus. If you’re ever doing anything
outdoors and see these coming in your general direction, chances are you’re
going to get rained on and possibly more.

out to the west of me, a good sign storms are moving in.

at this point I wasn’t planning on venturing out. I figured I’d sit at
home and track them on my GR3 software. I noticed a particular storm
about 10 miles off to my NW producing 2.00″ hail, so I thought…I can
catch this one…and off I went.


Needless to say the
hail was only pea size when I caught it, but the wind was
nuts, saw allot of downed trees on cars and houses, reported it to NOAA
[my first submission as an e-spotter.]


While I was out the storms just kept firing, I wasn’t
too surprised considering MLCAPES were over 3000! On the way home was
one of the most spectacular lightning shows I’ve seen in awhile. I
wish I had my canon 20-D camera [which I’m currently saving for] I could have
gotten a really good chance to practice taking real pictures at far
better quality.


Of course this is just candy
compared to the real action that occurs elsewhere in the country. Mark my words though, Ill be out there sooner than later and its good to get
some practice in now.


Here are some video stills of
the lightning.

bolt was actually striking a power transformer

Whether you’re impressed or not, I was disappointed when I saw the footage, because
this is about 10 percent of what I saw/ thought I caught within the
frame of my camera, proving once again lightning isn’t as easy to film
as one would think. Living in the city with poor visibility
and owning only a Sony Handycam doesn’t help either.
Here is the video. It starts out with a very
ghetto time lapse of the clouds I have pictured above. The video then moves into
where I caught up to the hail, u can hear it hitting the van, and at the
2nd red light I come to is when the high winds kicked in, estimated
around 50mph.
If the video doesn’t show up, try clicking the link that says myspace. [Earlier videos of mine were hosted there.]

Get this video and more at

Leave a Comment:

Old Content