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May 23 - Storms & Gustnadoes in Colorado

Hello from Liberal, Kansas!

We started the day in Goodland, KS and what a morning. It was a very cold, foggy and misty morning with temperatures in single digits (celsius)... Really, it was 6°C this morning. Based on the morning weather, we weren't overly optimistic on the day. We knew that for Sunday we needed to get south so our plan for today was to begin moving south through Colorado. Southern Colorado seemed to have the best chance of seeing storms but they were likely going to occur early.

We began by going back west into Colorado then south toward La Junta, CO. Some storms were firing in the area near La Junta, CO and we saw a funnel cloud report. As we got closer, in the town of Las Animas, CO there was a very evident, rotating wall cloud. It was extremely dusty as the storm sucked in all the dust around us. We kept with the storm but eventually it lost its energy and began to gust out.

A storm just south of our "dying" one began to show evidence of rotation but then, it too, lost its energy and gusted out. We kept up with the gust front and were treated to a good looking shelf cloud and several gustnadoes. Full disclosure: we have seen people posting they saw multiple tornadoes with these two storms today which is simply not true. We were with these storms the entire time and yes, there were several gustnadoes, but never once was there a tornado on the ground.

After keeping up with the gust front, we called it a day and headed east to Liberal, KS. This puts us in a good position to head south for tomorrow (Sunday). It will be a difficult forecast and if we need to venture south into southern Oklahoma or northern Texas, we're very worried about chasing. The entire area is flooded. Many roads, including major roads, are completely inundated with water. We will assess and venture that way but if it proves to be too dangerous, we will re-evaluate our chase stragety.

The Storm Prediction Center's thunderstorm risk for tomorrow (Sunday).