The Washington Post

High Plains magic: Two unimaginably stunning days of supercell thunderstorms (PHOTOS)

May 19, 2014. (Ian Livingston)

Ogallala, Neb. – Chasers and meteorologists call it “High Plains magic,” and when you see the results it’s easy to understand why.

Storm chasing buddies Mark Ellinwood, James Hyde and I left the East Coast last Friday for our annual “chase-cation” and we arrived in the target area on Sunday.

Despite marginal surface moisture (something generally required for big rotating supercells), an area of developing low pressure east of the Rockies and its fast-flowing, rotating air made for two days of memorable storms.

On Sunday we spent the day in Wyoming, and witnessed the viral supercell shared here yesterday. On Monday, the main target was nearby Nebraska.

Monday, May 19 – Albin, WY to near Ogallala, Neb.

May 19, 2014. (Ian Livingston)

May 19, 2014. (Ian Livingston)

May 19, 2014. (Ian Livingston)

May 19, 2014. (James Hyde)

May 19, 2014. (Ian Livingston)

May 19, 2014 – Time lapse. (Mark Ellinwood)

Sunday, May 18 – Eastern Wyoming

May 18, 2014. (Ian Livingston)

May 18, 2014. (Ian Livingston)

May 18, 2014. (Ian Livingston)

May 18, 2014. (James Hyde)

May 18, 2014. (Ian Livingston)

May 18, 2014. (Mark Ellinwood)

May 19 from other chasers

Cool video (remarkable footage starting around 1:35 minutes in) from freenewsau via YouTube:




Ian Livingston is a forecaster/photographer and information lead for the Capital Weather Gang. By day, Ian is a defense and national security researcher at a D.C. think tank.
Show Comments
Most Read

At a Glance


-- /66°
Drop 20%


48° /51°
Drop 70%


39° /48°
Drop 60%


43° /56°
Drop 70%


48° /57°
Drop 50%


40° /52°
National Airport

Right Now

Washington, D.C., Snow Tracker

Current Snow Total
Record Most Snow
Record Least Snow
(1997-98, 1972-73)
Last Winter's Snow Total

D.C. Area Almanac

Avg. High
Avg. Low
Rec. High
Rec. Low
Next Story
Matt Rogers · May 20, 2014

To keep reading, please enter your email address.

You’ll also receive from The Washington Post:
  • A free 6-week digital subscription
  • Our daily newsletter in your inbox

Please enter a valid email address

I have read and agree to the Terms of Service and Privacy Policy.

Please indicate agreement.

Thank you.

Check your inbox. We’ve sent an email explaining how to set up an account and activate your free digital subscription.