Stovepipe Tornado

This long-lived (over half an hour) tornado was obviously well-organized and probably quite intense at times, capable of great damage to a populated area. During its early and small stage it injured two kids in an overturned vehicle along I-80 and destroyed some unanchored mobile homes.  Fortunately, the vortex missed nearby settlements and passed over open farm and ranch land as it grew stouter (shown here, in the shape of a thick stovepipe).  Although we were in what usually is an optimal photographic position to the east and southeast of the tornado, a deep, dense core of rain and hail was wrapping around the opposite side, reducing available light and contrast near the tornado, while we bathed in a most unwelcome shaft of glaring sunlight. That was a tough break, a tremendous photographic challenge, and we were quite fortunate to get any decent images at all on slide film.  In its dying gasp, the tube would contort into a worm-like form.

2 N Big Springs NE (10 Jun 4) Looking NNW

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