In Lubbock and Amarillo, Texas on Saturday, thunderstorms erupted – their tops reaching at least 40-50 thousand feet high in the atmosphere. The storms formed in a region of highly unstable air which helped them achieve such altitudes.

The storms stand out for their vertical structure and imposing presence moreso than for any damage they produced. Although each storm unloaded large hail, neither spun-up tornadoes or generated wind damage.

Resembling bomb-generated mushroom clouds, they rank among the more visually impressive I’ve seen this year.

Lubbock storm

The National Weather Service office in Lubbock, Texas reported the monstrous storm witnessed east of town arose from the merger of two thunderstorms cells. It posted an amazing timelapse video to its Facebook page – shown below – which it describes accordingly: “Some very spectacular dynamic interactions between two supercells are evident with rotation evident. Plus, watch the rapid intensification of the storm complete with anvil development, updraft pulsing, and even lightning.”

Here is the amazing timelapse footage:

And here are some still shots:

Via Reddit

Amarillo storm

The storm that affected areas north of Amarillo prompted two tornado warnings (though no tornadoes were confirmed) and produced hail up to baseball size. Here are several photos of this impressive storm:

The University of Wisconsin-Madison’s Space Science and Engineering Center has some excellent high resolution satellite imagery which provides a visual of these storms from space: Views from space