Sunday, July 24, 2011

Wettest Day Ever in Chicago

Its been a stormy weekend here in Chicago. Repeated rounds of extremely heavy rain and vivid lightning have bombarded the area since Thursday night. I never managed to get any lightning shots as it seems like the bulk of the lightning activity managed to evade my house with the exception of those random 2 or 3 strikes that are really close during a 3hr long storm barrage.

The bigger story has been the flooding though, in fact Chicago just recorded its wettest day ever with O'hare Airport picking up 6.91" of rain on Saturday, which outsed the previous record of 6.64 in September of 2008 when the boring, thunderless remnants of a hurricane dumped on us for a couple days.

Here is a local news story about the event [probably time sensitive so I dont know how long the link will be valid:,0,6626062.story

While the rain at O'hare was incredible, we got about 4" less here at Midway, which just goes to show how much it can vary during these events. A tidbit of irony is that exactly one year ago on the very same date, the Midway area was hit with 7" of rain in one day and the massive flooding was affecting my neighborhood. I have a write up on that event on my site which can be seen here:

The photogenic prize for the weekend was a wicked shelf cloud that passed over early Friday morning, you dont often see structure and colors like this around here, so it was a real treat, but hard to capture in full due to the buildings and neighborhood trees. More can be seen on my homepage.

Since I have a weird date obsession with storms, it appears I will have to look forward to July 23rd 2012! Though usually once I notice a coincidence in the dates in which my area gets hit with storms is when the pattern ends. Today should be the last day of storms here, and normal people will finally get some weather they enjoy, while I look forward to a similar pattern rebuilding around Wednesday and potentially lasting 3 or 4 days. I love summer ring of fire patterns.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Chicago Heat Wave!

No news here, been sweltering through a heatwave most of the week. The high at Midway Airport has reached 100 degrees 2 days in a row, which hasn't happened since the deadly heat wave of 1995 that claimed nearly 700 lives.

I actually don't mind the heat though and for some reason look for excuses to be outside more than when temperatures are normal. Perhaps its that weird weather nerd in me that enjoys unusual weather, to know that such extreme heat is pretty rare around here and I want to get a taste of it, especially to feel what people in Texas have to deal with on a daily basis.

Other than that its been boring. With such a heat pattern comes ring of fire storms with vivid lightning, so far they have evaded the area day after day much to my dismay, but the next 48hrs are as good a chance as any, so heres hoping.

There is also a good chase setup tomorrow and Saturday too that I cannot partake in and its frustrating me to no end. See, there are very few things that keep me from chasing, and I am blessed with very understanding family and friends as I am always canceling out on and ditching plans last minute to go chasing, but once a year there is a massive annual picnic. Since its in the dead of summer I figure its safe enough to commit to and be a big part of the planning. Well, not this year, although the better of the 2 setups [Friday] I could still chase if it weren't for one more truck.

My air conditioner went out in early June, and for over a month its been a back and forth struggle with my mechanic to get it looked at, order the right parts and last week I FINALLY got an appointment scheduled, yup, that appointment just happens to be tomorrow. Otherwise I would just chase myself and marathon it back in time, since my normal crew of Skip and Jon are chasing both days. I guess the cards were stacked against me this  time, it sucks, and while I wish everyone the best luck, I am secretly hoping the cap holds. Nothing pains me more to miss a chase due to circumstances I can't control, but I guess I have been spoiled with more freedom to chase than most. Still, it irks me.

The other thing is I may be starting to work full time again very soon, and my freedom will be cut down, so I would like to grasp any chances I could, but then again after my second interview I may not like the offer anyways, so well find out.

O well, hopefully I can snag some lightning shots in the next 48hrs, if so, Ill post em here!