This day was also the most knowledgeable for me. While tracking the storm, we periodically stopped to get out of the van and observe the storms rotation, updraft, downdraft, path, etc. What I learned that day can never be replaced by textbook diagrams or lectures. Learning how storms and tornadoes behave and grow up close and personal makes me want to learn even more and makes me proud of my major.
Also on May 11, I was the weather team leader. What an experience that was trying to put together the weather brief when I knew ahead of time that this day would be an important one in observing storms. It was challenging to analyze the data and pick the right target area with such a big day ahead of us. The day became even more challenging while the storms were developing. It was hard to track the storm we were interested in and navigate the dirt roads of Nebraska. This challenge did not end until we were finished with chasing the storm for the day.
Overall, SWIFT was a very rewarding experience. I never thought looking at clouds could be so exciting. What I learned from this trip can never be replaced and I will cherish the memories forever.
-"Hook Echo" Hank Glenn