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Day 2: The Long Drive Down

Well, currently I'm sitting in a Days Inn in Springfield, Missouri. Unfortunately we didn't have internet until now so this is my first real post about the trip.

Friday: We arrived at Mark's house and go the "chase vehicle". It's a brand spankin' new Chrysler. It's luxury I must tell you. It has Sirius satellite radio, built in DVD player with 2 screens to watch movies, touch screen audio system with mp3 upload capability, stow-n-go seating and a reversing camera. When we picked it up, it only had 87 km on it. The once concern: it has a sunroof. Normally this is not of concern to people... However when there is a possibility for large hail, this is definitely a worry. We've come up with a few plans on building something to put over the sunroof and tie down on the roof racks (possibly a combination of Styrofoam and plywood). After packing in all our gear and setting up the radio antennas, we left Mark's house at around 8:00pm in heavy rain and incredible lightning. The whole drive along the lake shore gave us a spectacular view of the lightning. We took this as a good omen :). The plan was to drive as far as we possibly could that night and definitely make it into the USA. We drove from Toronto to "not-a-clue-where-we-were", Ohio. We drove until we found a random motel on the side of the highway (reminiscent of the movie Joy Ride) at around 3:00am. All we knew was that we were somewhere about 2 hours north of Dayton, Ohio. The motel was sketchy and smelled funky but it did for the night.

Saturday: We were up, packed and ready to get on the road by 9am (little sleep... not fun). We found a Tim Horton's!!!!! Needless to say we had breakfast there. The goal was to get as far south as possible and meet up with Mark's chase buddies Scott McPartland and Dave Lewison. So we drove, drove and drove some more. We met up with Scott and Dave at around 6:00pm and decided that we would head for Springfield, Missouri for the night and make our way towards Oklahoma City, Oklahoma on Sunday. Now the van has roughly 1600 km on it.  Here is a map of where we've traveled so far.  The red line is our track, start point Toronto, Ontario; end point Springfield, Missouri.

So here I am sitting in the Days Inn. It's luxury compared to the previous night. Right now, models are showing that Monday and Tuesday (possibly Wednesday) are going to be very very good chase days. After talking with Mark, Dave and Scott, they're all very excited about Monday and Tuesday. Right now, according to latest models, it looks like we're headed for south east Kansas or north east Oklahoma. Of course as we get closer to Monday, we'll refine our target area. Tomorrow we have the rest of the drive to do (roughly 6 hours) and then we need to set up the van with our equipment. In the mean time, here's the latest map for Monday:


We're headed for the "MDT" area (moderate chase of severe storms) and "45%" area which means there is a 45% chance of severe whether within 25 miles of any point in the pink blob. In the discussion, the Storm Prediction Center mentions:


...THERE IS A MDT RISK OF SVR TSTMS ACROSS NCNTRL/NE OK...SCNTRL/SE
KS AND EXTREME SW MO...


...THERE IS A SLGT RISK OF SVR TSTMS FROM THE CNTRL/SRN PLAINS TO
THE MID-MS VLY...


***SUPERCELLS WITH LONG-TRACK STRONG TORNADOES AND VERY LARGE HAIL
EXPECTED MONDAY LATE AFTN/EVENING ACROSS PARTS OF CNTRL/N OK...SE KS
AND SW MO***

Looks like it'll be interesting! If we do get the streaming up and running, you can visit Spotter Network and click on "Current Activity" and this will take you to a map of the USA with GPS locations of different chasers. On the right hand side you'll see the names of the chasers streaming videos. Look for Mark Robinson as one of the streamers. It may or may not be live.

New photos are currently being added to my photo album. Look under the heading of this blog for a link to my photo site.

**Note: streaming video is not yet available. We'll be attempting to set it up tomorrow. However, I've been informed by Mark that The Weather Network will be running promos for this chase event and episodes we're doing starting Monday. I'm not sure of times they'll be airing. As soon as streaming video is available I'll update this.

PS - HAPPY MOTHER'S DAY MOM! I LOVE YOU AND MISS YOU!

Reader Comments (3)

Great update Dayna thanks!

May 9, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterDave

This is so exciting!!! When all else fails, just grab onto a chicken ;-)
xoxo

May 9, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterCatherine

If there are no chickens in site, you might notice a cow or two floating by:)

May 10, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterShelley-Lynne
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