June 19, 2009 – Chase in Eastern Illinois

A moderate risk and 10% chance of tornadoes across Central Illinois is a nice way to start off a Friday. A severe thunderstorm watch was pasted across northern and central IL at 2:30pm. Around 3:00pm, several storms were firing up along intersecting outflow boundaries in DeWitt and Logan counties. The cell that I had my eye on was in DeWitt county which was severe warned at 3:41pm. Thanks to my lovely AT&T piece of crap data connection not working yet again, I was limited to the radar on my phone.

I departed Champaign at 4:00pm and headed west on RT 10. I pulled off just north of Seymour (CR 1675N / 0.25 miles west of CR 200E) to observe a nice looking wall cloud. It had lots of vertical motion, but it couldn’t get its act together and quickly died out. A severe thunderstorm was issued for this cell at 4:21pm. I decided to head south a few miles and then follow the storm east across Champaign county. At 5:07pm, I pulled off at the Unity East Elementary School parking lot in Philo and observed another wall cloud. I would estimate the winds were around 40mph as the storm moved past me.

I continued east on CR 15 and entered into Vermilion county. I was heading south on CR 600E just south of Fairmount when a tornado warning was issued for the southern part of the county. Unfortunately everything was getting rain-wrapped at this point, so I made the decision to head west and intercept the line of storms behind these cells. Back in Champaign county, I pulled off at CR 1500N just west of CR 200E at 6:38pm to await the line of storms. I was expecting a decent amount of wind as the storm was bowing out near my location, but I did not encounter much wind at all and definitely none that was of severe nature. Not wanting to chase the line that was now east of me, I called it a chase and headed home.

Final Thoughts
Another chase full of wall clouds and nothing to show for it. I will definitely have to find a different data solution for future chases though because AT&T just doesn’t work in this area anymore. Luckily the road network and visibility was decent enough to chase without really needing data.

Click here to view/purchase photos from this chase.

Total Mileage: 109 miles

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