Wednesday was yet another “down day” that was not really down. That afternoon the CSWR probe vehicles had a *van-nado* practice. You may have seen this on Discovery Channel’s “Stormchasers”…because it’s one of Josh’s things. The idea is that Josh and Karen scope out an area near where we’re staying that has a good road network, and we have a practice session to deploy the tornado pods. The fun part is, one vehicle (typically the cargo van) acts as the tornado and travels down the road as the deployments are happening. If the van-nado catches up with you, you’re dead. We had a good time with it; I just rode along with Probe 12 and got some pictures of them doing deployments.
That night was another missions summaries presentation, then dinner at a Chinese buffet, free root beer floats at Sonic, and “crack Uno” with Matt, Jacob, and Jeff. It’s fast-paced and I still don’t know all the rules. :)
Thursday was another marginal day. One of those days that just kind of blurs together. We left right after the briefing for Colorado, then moved north into Wyoming. First time in Wyoming! My favorite thing that happened that day was at a gas station. We were waiting for word on what we were going to do while Josh was in the Field Coordinator vehicle. Eventually he got out, looked around, and started running towards his vehicle. At which point the rest of us started and began making the move towards our cars. Then Josh started laughing and said, “I just wanted to see what everyone would do.”
We target a cell near Cheyenne, which got some good photos (sorry that the pictures are delayed awhile after the text is posted; with over 100 people on a single small-town hotel internet connection at once it slows things down). I poked my head into DOW7 to see what Josh and Karen were doing in the back and they invited me up there to sit and watch. Then we moved to another cell nearby, but it was very cold outside which disrupted the storm’s updraft.
As we began heading out, Herb asked me if I wanted to switch out of DOW Van and move into one of the radars for the trip home. Justin was very kind and gave me his seat in the back of DOW6, so I got to ride back in the “Purdue DOW” with Kevin and Jacob, who gave me the inside scoop on Indiana.