Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Dust In The Wind

Taking pictures of the media taking pictures. Blows your mind, right?

Dust in the wind is SO not a good thing! I had to put my sunglasses on in the middle of a storm tonight to keep the sand out of my eyes. I couldn't keep it out of my mouth though...might still have some grit in there, haha.

Today was pretty cool. I was put with the photogrammetry team and was assigned to man the HD video camera. Also, I was in charge of driving. Which was good, because it gave me something to do. We took a couple of hours to reach our initial target in northwestern Nebraska. We found a nice picnic area to have lunch. It was near a school, so lots of small children and high schoolers wandered around looking at everything--especially the TIV. Today was my first real experience with media everywhere! It was very intimidating; I am much more aware of how awkward I am when faced with a video camera.

So then it was go time, and I'm sure we looked pretty cool running to our vehicles and taking off at once. Of course I ruined the sequence of the photogrammetry/mobile mesonet row by not getting the memo that a camera wanted to get all of us pulling out one after the other. Everyone else was flawless; I had to wait until the end after staring at the camera awkwardly for about a minute.

So we took off towards the east to get in front of this bugger:

The aforementioned bugger.

Unfortunately after travelling for about an hour, we decided to give up on the storm. A severe thunderstorm warning was later issued for the same storm... that's life. Meanwhile, some of the leaders discussed whether or not we were going to call it a night or aim towards another cell northwest of our hotel location. The cell began to blossom on the radar as we moved towards it, and we actually were able to semi-deploy many of our instruments.

NOXP Radar moving towards our new target.

Tony and I got out to set up the photogrammetry equipment, and I brought along my own camera. As we were setting up the tripod for the HD camera, this started happening:

Tumbleweeds and dust

A still of the same time period.

And it was followed shortly thereafter with intense downpours and small hail. Needless to say we had to hurry to get the photo equipment back into the vehicle so it didn't get ruined. After some time the radars continued with their scans and most of the rest of the crews headed to the hotel for the night. Tomorrow doesn't look too promising, but what's new?

We saw two rainbows today. One after each storm. :)


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  2. ahh that's so cool! I can't believe you're actually out there in the middle of that, when we get an isolated thunderstorm here I'm hiding under the bed... nevermind supercells and the dry lines you'll probably encounter.

  3. you are so cool. for real. i can't even believe that im friends with you. im being 100% serious too. everytime the vortex2 project comes up on the weather channel i yell, that's mallie's thing!!! to my parents. i mean, how many people actually grow up to do their dream? you making it here is like someone saying im going to be a pro athlete and making it happen. i am so proud of you!!! youre the closest thing i have to a celeb haha. also, in your posts try to define the stuff that you think us nonweather people might know :-P. miss you! -dasha