July 10 2008
3 rounds of severe storms hit central Minnesota in a 12 hour period
Could have just as well sat in the parking lot at the local National Weather Service Office.   Photo is taken just
north of highway 5 on the border of Chanhassen and Victoria MN looking to the northwest.
Note the new house being built on the right.  Within a few minutes the Tyvek covering on the north and west sides
is going to get peeled off along with A LOT of tree debris flying around.  I magaged to find the highest hill with a
clear view possible somehow in a heavily wooded area.
About this time I started having flashbacks to June 14 2006 in Crow Agency, Montana.  
Was really questioning my decsion to shoot this from the open on top of a hill.
This new development is called "The Arbor".  I figured I must be in a good place to watch if they built an overlook
before they even built a house.
Shelf is right on top of me at this point.  However I took time to notice the hail dents from the 2006 storm and
wonder if I was in for a repeat.
The shelf races off to the southeast.  The speed at which the scud was moving just off the ground was a good
indicator of what was going to hit once the precip core hit.
This shot is not color enhanced.  It was really this green in the core.  About this time I looked down the street to
the right and saw a 25-30 foot tree go crashing down a long with MANY tree branches.  Oh yeah, being I left to
chase right from the office, I managed to leave both of the video cameras at home!!  The top wind gust I
measured was only 59.7 mph along with nickle sized hail so this time I lucked out and missed the big gusts along
with the golf balls.  I saw a lot of widespread damage all the way from my current location all of the way back to
Delano, MN on my way home ranging from trees toppled to shingles off barns but the worst was Waconia, MN
where it was garbage pick up day.  After the storm, it was really garbage pick up day.  What a mess.
Round 2
The Intermission
Throughout the afternoon, more elevated cells kept firing at a boundary intersection left from
the earlier storms.  This feature in Wright county would keep curling and wrapping around.  
It was fun to watch as I made the decision I'm going to cheat and invest in a lightning trigger
after going 0 for 248 in the number of shots I took trying to get daylight lightning.
Note the color of the water in Buffalo Lake?  Yeah, it doesn't smell much better either!
The kids don't get to swim in this lake and we won't eat fish out of it.  Yuck.

There was a real LP supercell in MN also!  We could see the tower about 35 miles northeast
of us but had a baseball game to attend.  Melanie Metz has some
awesome pics of it on her
site which you need to see!
Round 3
The Finale
The remants of the North Dakota cells congealed into another linear blob as they crossed central Minnesota
around the midnight hour.  Started out near Avon, MN in Stearns county but kept ducking east and south as the
line approached.  The shelf wasn't very impressive but this incredile roll cloud began to form as the cells
collapsed.  This is looking west over Clearwater Lake near Annandale, MN.
Roll could passing over Maple Lake, MN.  The weird orange lights on the left side are from the
airport light hitting the roll cloud.
The view over Buffalo Lake again.  It still smelled just as bad but the roll cloud being lit up by
the city lights of Buffalo, MN made for a cool view.  The kids really liked watching this one.
North of Montrose, MN as we call it a night.  There was a second set of storms coming for the
west which were also collapsing causing a second roll cloud behind up.  I we shot some video
of this feature by slowly panning in a 360 degree circle.   You can see it as the lightning from
this mess illuminates the other roll cloud turning in white-ish gray off to the south east.
2008 Chase Main