Reed was born and raised in Grand Rapids, MI, and became interested in extreme weather at a very young age. He was also an avid insect, reptile, and amphibian collector and tree identification enthusiast, but decided to pursue his greatest passion and began studying meteorology at the University of Oklahoma in 1998. Reed photographed his first tornado in October 1998, and was addicted to extreme storm chasing ever since. Every spring and summer season, he travels from the Mexican Border to Canada striving to photograph tornadoes from extreme close range (within 1/8 mile), often driving more than 40,000 miles during the spring and summer.
Reed is currently featured on Discovery Channel's Storm Chasers television series, where he and the TVN team can be seen engaged in extreme tornado research projects in the TVN Dominator. Notable chases since their start on the series in 2008 include successfully deploying a camera/instrument probe into a fast-moving Kansas twister on May 29, 2008; intercepting five tornadoes during the 2009 season with the radar-equipped Dominator, measuring over 130 mph wind gusts in two of them and losing the driver's side window inside the Aurora, Nebraska tornado on June 17, 2009; measuring vertical velocities approaching 200 MPH in a violent, EF-4 Minnesota tornado on June 17, 2010; and documenting the devastating modern-day Super Outbreak in Mississippi and Alabama on April 27, 2011. Other notable storm chases over Reed's career include video-tapingÂ the May 3, 1999 F5 tornado from an overpass near Moore, OK; the Manchester, SD wedge tornado that passed only a few hundred yards from the vehicle on June 24, 2003; the May 4, 2007 Ellis Co, OK tornado that ripped trees from the ground 100 yards away; the half-mile wide monster tornado in Manitoba, Canada on June 23, 2007; and documenting tornadic storms in Argentina in early 2010. Reed also chases hurricanes and blizzards, and hopes to expand to Asia and Australian for typhoons and tropical cyclones.
Reed graduated from Oklahoma University with a Bachelor's in Meteorology in 2002, a Master's in 2005 and will complete his Ph.D. in Meteorology in 2011. He will storm chase until the day he dies!!!
Joel was raised in the heart of tornado alley, Elk City, Oklahoma. Joel witnessed numerous severe storms and several tornadoes in his early childhood years which helped to feed his interests in extreme weather. He even began producing weather "forecasts" as early as the first grade. In 1998 Joel moved to Norman, Oklahoma, to study meteorology at the University of Oklahoma. While there, his fascination with storms and stormchasing only grew. In 2001 Joel was selected to be on a special episode of Atmospheres (aired on The Weather Channel), in which he explored the various climates of Hawaii alongside Jim Cantore and Mish Michaels. Some of Joel's most notable intercepts include the May 3rd, 1999, F5 Moore, OK twister; the October 9th, 2001 F3 tornado that narrowly missed his hometown of Elk City, OK; and the May 27th, 2001, White Deer, TX tornado. In May 8, 2003 in northern Kansas, Joel was driving his Ford Explorer down a water-covered highway and began hydroplaning at 80 mph. With 5 stormchasers in the vehicle, his car fish-tailed violently and then spun 720 degrees at 80 mph, and Joel safely stabilized the spin without slowing down. Joel has also participated in two hurricane chases, including Hurricane Frances that came into Florida in 2004 and Hurricane Rita which ravaged much of the Louisiana and Texas coasts in 2005. After graduating with his degree in Meteorology in 2002, Joel started a career in Real Estate. He now owns and operates two successful Real Estate companies in the Oklahoma City/Norman area, and is continuing to look for ways to expand his businesses. Being his own boss, Joel is able to schedule most of his work around his stormchase interests, giving him opportunities that he would not have with a normal job. Joel also enjoys basketball, weightlifting, long distance running, and attending OU football and basketball games.
Over the years, Heidi has gained experience with a wide range of extreme weather: crippling snowstorms in the Appalachians, monsoon season in Arizona, and tornadoes, catastrophic flooding and record-breaking drought in Arkansas and Oklahoma. As a high school student in western Maryland, Heidi maintained a web-based remote weather station for Bob Ryan at NBC4 TV in Washington, DC, using GOES satellite imagery for local forecasts that were broadcast on the evening news. In conjunction with this undertaking, she also hosted a delegation from Polish National Television, demonstrating what was then cutting-edge technology in her school's weather lab for an international audience. Interestingly enough, Heidi now spends much of her time involved in the process of licensing TVN's extreme weather video to news agencies and production companies world-wide.
As a storm chaser, Heidi started out with local chases around her home base in the challenging terrain of northern Arkansas, and for several years she was a regular photography contributor and "Weather Watcher" for KAIT-8, Jonesboro.Â Albeit a brief glimpse during lightning flashes, her first tornado was a monster: a nighttime EF-4Â better known as the historic February 5th, 2008, 122-mile "groundscrubber" that devastated 7 counties across the Arkansas Ozarks. More recently, Heidi documented the long-tracked EF-5 tornado that impacted central Oklahoma on May 24, 2011.
When she isn't preoccupied with website administration, stock video sales and anything else that happens to come up, Heidi enjoys going places, seeing things, thinking about stuff, taking pictures, music, writing, and eating interesting foods...and looking at archived weather data.
Matt is a young blossoming storm chaser for the Tornadovideos.net team. Matt's passion for weather is undeniably intense, and he has already filmed extreme weather footage in his young storm chasing career. Raised in the small western Oklahoma town of Weatherford, Matt was introduced to a variety of extreme weather events. As a young child he was very fearful of storms, and wanted them to stay as far away from him as possible. He grew up though major weather events such as the devastating May 3rd, 1999 tornado outbreak, or the massive ice storm of Jan 2002, that wrecked havoc on western Oklahoma and wiped the power out of western Oklahoma for 10 days. Events such as these turned Matt's fear into fascination of the power weather have on earth. Matt is now a Senior Meteorology student at the University of Oklahoma, and will graduate in December 2008. After graduation, Matt hopes to help warn and get information to the public by continuing to chase tornadoes, hurricanes, and blizzards.
Matt chases as the Stream1 team for Tornadovideos.net along with his chase partners: Curtis McDonald, Daniel Betten, and Matt Van Every.
Matt was born and raised in Lewisville, TX and became interested in extreme weather at the ripe age of eight when his family was hit by a violent tornado in the Texas panhandle while on the way home from a family vacation in Colorado. He remembers witnessing intense damage and destruction including part of the roof missing off the hotel, all the water sucked out of the hotel swimming pool with the sign laying in it, and 3 trains mangled at a station across the street. Since that day all he as ever wanted to do was study and witness extreme weather. Matt is interested in and chases tornadoes, hail, lighting, flooding, ice/snow storms, and hurricanes. He is also very interested in research, and has designed and developed a high-resolution and accurate network of automated instruments on the University of Oklahoma's Kessler Farm Field Laboratory in Washington, OK. Matt currently has to complete one more semester at the University of Oklahoma in order to obtain his Bachelors Degree in meteorology with 2 minors: math and hydrology. He is a proud Eagle Scout and a NOAA National Earnest F. Holling Scholar. He has worked with the National Severe Storms Laboratory and currently is a student volunteer at the Norman, OK Weather Forecast Office where he routinely assists with severe weather and the issuing of products. Additional interests include a good workout, mechanics, electronics, and pretty much anything that is outdoors or involves working with his hands. Matt will also be contributing to the TVN blog on a daily basis.
Curtis McDonald was born and raised 40 miles southwest of St. Louis, Missouri and now resides in Norman Oklahoma where he is working on his degree from the School of Meteorology at the University of Oklahoma. During Curtis' early years severe thunderstorms frighten him, however things drastically changed around the age of six when he became increasingly fascinated by all forms of weather including snowstorms, ice storms, flooding, and thunderstorms. Curtis remembers waiting up all night for the first snowflakes to fall on an approaching winter storm, watching continuous news coverage of the Great Flood of 1993 and convincing his mom to drive around in a thunderstorm well before he had his driver's license. All these things and more shows Curtis' passion for all kinds of extreme weather. In the fall of 2005 Curtis moved to Oklahoma to pursue his dream of becoming a meteorologist. Here is where he became very passionate in storm chasing and plans on chasing all kinds of extreme weather for the rest of his life. Curtis is the fearless driver of the TVN Stream 1 team, specializing in driving over large downed trees and navigating through seemingly impassable mud roads.
Daniel was born and raised in Dallas, Texas where from an early age he was always fascinated by the weather. He would stay up all night waiting for snow to fall, which it never would, and watching electrical storms move through. Daniel's interest in weather, however, was not just limited to snow and lightning but he was also glued to the TV whenever hurricane coverage or severe weather outbreaks in North Texas were occurring. Watching the movie Twister and watching coverage of the F3 tornado that hit Fort Worth in 1998 focused his weather interests on tornadoes. He participated in the International Science Fair in 2002 as his love of weather related research began to grow.
Right now Daniel lives in Norman, Oklahoma works as an undergraduate research assistant with the University of Oklahoma. He has participated in two field projects with the National Severe Storms Laboratory, helping run the Shared Mobile Atmospheric Research & Teaching Radar (SMARTR) and driving mobile Mesonet vehicles. He also went to Costa Rica last summer to help run the radar in a project that was coordinated by the National Aeronautical and Space Administration (NASA) for three weeks. Daniel plans on graduating in December with a bachelor in Meteorology and minors in math and hydrology before he enters graduate school at OU. He is currently working on a dual-doppler analysis of the May 29th 2004 Geary, OK tornadic supercell that will be presented at the Severe Local Storms conference in October.
In his spare time he enjoys chasing with Stream 1 and provides an endless amount of quotes that are not soon forgotten. He also enjoys working out and playing a variety of sports and keeping up with his fantasy sports teams.
Dan was born in Modesto, CA. Â He then moved to Papillion, NE when he was 9 years old. Â His fascination with weather began when he was about 13 years old. Â Dan began to storm chase in 2007 when he was 19 years old, Â and Founded the Omaha Twister Chasers in 2009. Â His first photographed tornado was on April 29, 2010 in Washington County, KS. Â Dan is currently getting his Associates Degree in Applied Science at a Metropolitan Community College in Nebraska. Â Hopefully will soon transfer to University of Nebraska at Lincoln for Meteorology. Â Dan likes to follow college football (GO OU!), and watching the PGA tour. Dan has been chasing for three years, and has seen two confirmed tornadoes.
Jim was born and has lived in Omaha, NE all his life. Â His interest in weather started at a young age. Â He began storm chasing in 2007. Â He went to school for Electronics and Network engineering, but later changed his focus. Â His enthusiasm for severe weather never left him though. Â Jim helped Dan form the Omaha Twister Chasers, and works on all the grunt work in the background. Â Jim enjoys cooking, both for work and at home. Â When he isn't chasing or working, He likes to design websites and play video games. Â Jim has been chasing for two and a half years and has seen two confirmed tornadoes
Jeremy was born in Germany and after moving around as an Air Force kid wound up in La Vista. During the next 10 years he lived there and was always fascinated by the severe weather, throughout the years whether it was thunderstorms or snowstorms. He moved to Florida for a year where he experienced more thunderstorms and even Hurricane Gordon. Then he returned to Nebraska to finish high school and stayed there until he joined the Air Force. After a short military career he ended up in Nebraska yet again and continues to be intrigued by severe weather. Now he has found friends that are also severe weather enthusiasts and has gone on his first official chase on 4-29-10 and got to see his first tornado.
Will was born in Omaha, Nebraska in 1983. He has lived in Omaha his entire life other than a couple years in Rapid City, South Dakota and time served in the Armed Forces. Will has been fascinated with weather from a very young age. This fascination started as a fear when he was young, but transpired into a full-blown addiction to chase and document storms when he was a teenager. Will has been chasing casually for over eight years and has been chasing with more dedication and focus on educating himself for the last three years. Will is currently finishing up college course work for his Bachelorâ€™s in Business Management and plans to begin studies for Atmospheric Sciences very soon to further pursue his true calling. When not chasing Will enjoys anything outdoors, fishing, hunting, golf, camping, and boating. Will has witnessed 24 tornadoes with the 2010 year being his most active thus far.
Robbie was born and raised in Omaha. Â He has also lived in Florida
were he experienced hurricanes and lived in Colorado experiencing
blizzards. Â His fascination with weather started at a young age
watching storms while at his baseball games. He is currently studying
aviation science at UNO. While not chasing storms he enjoys playing
videos games and driving around in his mustang. His first official
chase with OTC was on May 10th, 2010 where he saw his first confirmed
Mikeâ€™s passion for storm chasing started at a young age being born and
raised in Nebraska, simply awed by Mother Nature. Mike has been
chasing all over the midwest for 5 years where he finds it to be an
awe inspiring, powerful personal experience with Mother Nature. Â When
not chasing Mike enjoys relaxing from thousands of miles on the road
by being able to enjoy family/friends, the outdoors & being active
playing sports. Mike has witnessed 12 tornadoes from 2007-2012, most
noteably the La Grange, WY (Goshen County) tornado in 2009 along with
the Vortex 2 intercept. Mike looks forward to a successful 2012 chase
season as a proud member with Omaha Twister Chasers and to continue
his passion of storm chasing and photography.
Oliver, a.k.a. Klipsi, was born in Boston, MA by a French mother and Swiss dad, but moved back to Europe at age 1 and grew up in Switzerland. Klipsi graduated from a Swiss high school with a diploma equivalent to French baccalaureat, with emphasis on science and languages, and graduated cum laude from Lausanne Hotel Management School. He has substantial driving experience, having worked for an exotic car rental and limousine service companies for the past 23 years with a professional Swiss limo and minibus license, and has had substantial experience transporting celebrity and VIP clients. Klipsi has been chasing tornadoes with several tour companies since 2000 and his combined driving and storm chasing experience is second to none, which helps maintain a high level of safety during our tours. Being fluent in Swiss-German dialect, German, French, and English, as well as some Italian, Klipsi is a unique asset for our European guests, who can learn the science of storm chasing in their primary language!
Klipsi is a world traveler and word-renown solar eclipse observer, and has ventured around the globe to all continents to observe, film, photograph and/or webcast 25 solar eclipses since 1994, including icebreaker cruise-expeditions to Antarctica and the North Pole. Other astronomical observations include Leonid meteor storms in Thailand, and the extremely rare simultaneous occultation of Venus and Jupiter by the Moon from Ascension Island in the South Atlantic Ocean.
Klipsi will be a guide on all Southern and Northern Plains tours!
Dave Holder, 26 years of age and born in England, is one of the most passionate storm chasers in the country. Now living in Norman, Oklahoma, he is working on his degree from the School of Meteorology at the University of Oklahoma.
Dave moved to the Philadelphia area when he was a small child, and it was here where his passion for weather blossomed. As a kid, he would stay up until early morning hours watching the Weather Channel. Weather became an obsession, watching the local radar continuously when storms were around. In addition to thunderstorms, winter weather events became highlights of Dave's early life. The Storm of the Century in 1993 marked a deep impression upon Dave's psyche.
A carefree and often spontaneous individual, Dave coupled his love of weather with his love of geography and travel. By the time he turned 23 years old, he had visited every state in the country. His love for long road trips produced 8 coast to coast drives and other countless hours in the car from the Mexican border to the Canadian Rockies.
Now with his trademark red Hyundai, Dave has storm chased from Texas north to the Canadian Prairies. He has been featured live on local television stations in Minneapolis and has appeared on National Canadian Radio outlets.
Some of Dave's other interests are poker and playing football and basketball. He plans to obtain a motorcycle license and a pilot's license in the not-too-distant future.
Dave would like nothing more than to make a living traveling and chasing weather events.
Nick grew up in St Anthony Village, a small suburb northeast of Minneapolis in Minnesota. It is here where his passion and love for all things weather began.
Back in the early 1980s, growing up as a young child, several rounds of severe storms would hit the Twin Cities each summer. These storms which striked great fear into me, and I would hide in the basement until the storms have passed each time. Then, an early spring Tornado hit St. Anthony Village and NE Minneapolis very close to our home impacting the lives of many we knew. After witnessing this storm and the aftermath that it caused, I then began to turn my fear for severe weather and tornadoâ€™s into a striving for understanding and a passion to learn about how and why these storms occur. Ever since then, I have been studying and tracking severe weather from my childhood to the present day.
I have also given back to the community through public service and reaching out to others to understand these severe storms as a Skywarn Storm Spotter as well as a Certified Skywarn Trainer in Minnesota. I have taught several many classes cross the Twin Cities Metro area, as well as out state Minnesota. In fact in 2009, I was awarded the Minnesota Skywarn Volunteer of the Year award for outstanding service and commitment to the local Skywarn Program. I also have been featured in multiple radio, television and print stories and programs regarding severe storms and tornadoes. Â I am also proud to be streaming live on TornadoVideos.net as I track severe storms and tornadoes across the Northern Plains and Upper Midwest. Â I hope to see many of you out across the country as I track these forces of Nature, but if not please follow along with us on our chase cam!
I currently work for World Data Products, Inc.. I am also a licensed Amatuer Radio Operator with call sign WX0SVR. We have our website at www.prairiewindchasers.com. Please stop by to learn more about our chase adventures!
Amanda grew up in the far western portion of Minnesota â€“ in a small rural prairie town of Chokio. My love of severe weather came when the storms rolled through the backyard from the Dakotaâ€™s. I studied many weather books and kept logs as a kid. I was fascinated in counting lighting strikes to find out how far away the storm was from the home. I was very fascinated with tornadoes back then as well.
When I was around 10 or so, my Dad and I witnessed a rope tornado to our northeast of the farm. From that point on the weather bug bit me. Storm chasing gives me the â€œvacationâ€ away from work . I am also a licensed Amateur Radio Operator with the call sign KD0DWS. I am also a trained Certified Skywarn Instructor as well as a trained Certified Skywarn Spotter.
I also love photography! I have done: weddings, family, babies, seniors, wildlife, etc.
He brings over 30 years of experience, work, documenting and study in Severe Weather and Disasters.
Dennis' involvement and fascination with severe weather dates back to the mid 1970's when several deadly tornadoes struck areas of Birmingham, Alabama and across the Southeast over the period of just a few years. It was during a Search and Rescue Operation on April 4, 1977 in an area known as Smithfield (section of Birmingham) that Dennis had the lifelong desire to know more about severe weather firmly instilled in him. He found and rescued a child, approximately one month old, from among the rubble where a tornado had just hit minutes before. This young infant had a splinter of wood embedded in one eye and Dennis took the child to the arriving fire and medical personnnel and continued his efforts to help others injured in the area. The utter destruction and loss of life was tremendous in just this one neighborhood where over 20 were killed and over 150 injured. Over the course of the next 30 + years, Dennis has continually been involved in all phases of severe weather and its aftermaths. He was in law enforcement in various areas of Florida and was there through 4 hurricanes and several tornadoes, including Hurricane Andrew in August 1992.
Today, Dennis is the Chairman and Executive Director of Alert 1 Weather, Inc , a Non-Profit Organization. He devotes all his time to documenting all forms of severe weather events, performing research and studies, and providing Humanitarian Disaster Relief to those in need. In addition to helping those in need, he hopes that some of his work and involvement may provide the necessary advance warnings to help save lives and through his research, he may help provide answers to better understand the science of severe weather.
My name is James Reynolds, I'm 24 and was born in High Wycombe near London. As you can probably guess from the picture, I am in awe of Mother Nature when she is at her most violent. Every year since 2005 I have made it my aim to capture on film the most violent and destructive storms which strike Asia - typhoons. Otherwise known as hurricanes in the Americas or cyclones in the southern hemisphere these are the strongest and most dangerous storm systems on earth.
I graduated in 2006 from Edinburgh University with an MA in Chinese and immediately moved to Shanghai, China to be close to where typhoons strike every year. So far my storm chasing expeditions have taken me from coastal Vietnam to the depths of the rural Japan and the wilds of eastern Taiwan to the mega cities of China as well as the typhoon blasted islands of Okinawa.
My exploits have received considerable media attention with UK's The Independent, Hong Kong's The South China Morning Post and Scotland's Daily Record all running features on my work. My pictures have also appeared in Shanghai's Hint! magazine and my film footage used by Germany's ARD and the government of Taiwan.
When I am not intercepting storms I work for the documentary production company Kaimu Productions in Shanghai. I have worked on a variety of different productions ranging from the Ancient Discoveries series for the History Channel to a current affairs series for Germany's N-TV.
I love travelling and photography and try to combine the two as often as I can. My previous trips have included venturing into the jungles of Cambodia, the wastelands of Kazakhstan, the volcanoes of Hawaii and the oxygen starved frontier of China and Pakistan.
My aim will always be to push the boundaries of intercepting storms to capture the full force of nature and its effects on the people caught in its path.
Visit James' website at: http://TyphoonFury.com
Jeffâ€™s fascination with all things thunderstorms began by age 10, as he sat glued to his TV set watching radar loops on potential severe weather days. As luck would have it, he saw ~6 tornadoes on his first storm chase (August 1999 in southern Minnesota), and that provided an easy motivator to jump into storm chasing. In the fall of 2001, Jeff moved down to Oklahoma to attend the University of Oklahoma, where he majored in meteorology and minored in mathematics. Chases became more frequent, and chase distances became greater, with each passing year as he enjoyed the volatile and oft-changing weather that characterizes spring and early summer in the southern Plains.
In the spring of 2005, Jeff received his Bachelors of Science degree in meteorology from the University of Oklahoma, and he began his Masterâ€™s degree coursework shortly thereafter. Projects explored while working on his M.S. degree include an examination of the 20 March 2007 tornado mini-supercell that occurred in northwestern Oklahoma; a brief overview of the 21 April 2006 El Reno, OK, tornadic supercell; and, as the subject of his M.S. thesis, an examination of the attenuation correction and hydrometeor classification of mobile high-resolution, dual-polarimetric, X-band Doppler radar observations of severe convective storms. He completed his M.S. in the summer of 2008, and he is currently pursuing his Ph.D. in meteorology at OU. From spring 2007 onward, Jeff has been spending at least a month (early May â€“ early June) chasing with several mobile Doppler weather radars developed outside of the University of Oklahoma. To date, his best-remembered season on the Plains is 2004, a year during which forecasts verified nicely and tornado-filled tapes rolled quickly through his camcorder. Jeff currently lives with his wife and his many pets in the Oklahoma City area. For him, as for many storm chasers and meteorologists, each question that is answered through new research and observations only brings forth more questions that require new techniques, studies, and observations.
Visit Jeff's website at http://TornadoCentral.com
Brian has been interested in extreme weather and storm chasing for as long as he can remember. From tornadoes and severe storms to snow and flooding, his interests include any form of severe or unusual weather. He has been a TV photographer in Fort Smith, Arkansas for most of the past 6 years but recently left his day job to focus on going back to school and allow more time to storm chase.
Although he recalls driving his bike into afternoon thunderstorms as early as 1994 (when he was just 13 years old), Brian began storm chasing seriously in 1999. He enjoys lightning photography and can hardly pass up even the slightest chance to try and capture a nice lightning strike. He is also interested in Astronomy and is nearly as obsessed with catching meteors as he is photographing lightning.
Since moving to Arkansas from Mississippi with his family in 1989, he can't imagine living anywhere other than in the mountains of Northwest Arkansas -- even though it's not the greatest area for storm chasing! He especially loves the varied weather that the mountainous areas experience and, while many storm chasers shy away from chasing in this area, has no problems chasing day or night in â€œthe jungleâ€. Brian is also a huge Arkansas Razorbacks fan and regularly attends games.
Brian has been married since 2003 and his wife Jennifer even occasionally comes with him on storm chases. Jennifer is a 3rd grade teacher at JC Westside Elementary and is pursuing her masterâ€™s degree in the hopes of being an elementary counselor. Brian intercepted Hurricane Katrina with his wife at Slidell, LA and ranks that event high on his list of the most extreme weather. His website http://RealClearWx.com has reports of all of his storm chases, pictures of all sorts of extreme weather, and much more.
Wesley has always been fascinated with weather. When he was really young he use to watch the Weather Channel all day. When Wes would go to the county library he would go directly to the weather books just to see some pictures of tornadoes. He knew back then that seeing a tornado for himself was a must.
Wesley grew up in the Texas Panhandle (Borger area) so to see severe storms was never hard. Storms tend to find you on the Southern Plains. He remembers many different experiences with severe weather when he was young, like the first time baseball size hail fell in the front yard. All the funnels/tornadoes he saw before he entered college were done from his backyard (at least 5). One year in the late 1990's when he lived just east of Borger, a storm moved over his area on a warm afternoon. He was outside with his family when he noticed that they were under a large rain-free base. He was actually in the "bearâ€™s cage" at that time. Wesley was looking west when something through some trees to his south caught his eyes. There was a condensation funnel half way to the ground to the SSW. While everyone ran to the basement as he stood under a loading dock on the back of a nearby building to watch it. Wes watched the funnel move directly at him for a couple minutes as hail up to golfballs hammered the area. When the funnel was about a mile away, he noticed a large power flash as the funnel came in contact with the ground becoming his first tornado. The funnel soon dissipated, but as it past above Wes, he could still see the clouds spinning above him. He was hooked.
Though he didnâ€™t get to see the F-4 tornadoes that went through Fritch (June 27th, 1992) or Pampa (June 8, 1995), Wes did get to see these monstrous storms from a distance and he still has the images of those towers in his head like they were yesterday. Wes went through and looked at the damage from both and it only made him want to chase more. Before Wes even got his license, he was able to convince his dad on a few occasions to go out and chase into neighboring counties. He only saw a few gustnadoes, but his chasing career had begun. Wes chased a few time in high school, but it didnâ€™t become a regular thing until college.
Wesley received his B.S. in Geography from OU in May 2008, while chasing across TX, NM, OK, KS, MO, AR & NE fulltime during his time in college. Visit Wesley's website at http://www.owlsp.com
Marc Austin was born in Miami, OK. He is a 24 year old graduate student at FSU. On August 16, 2008, Marc married Sharon Pearce, now Sharon Austin, another member of the team. He is now happily married and resides in Tallahassee, FL.
Marc's interest in severe weather began when he saw the tornado video entitled "Terrible Tuesday" in elementary school. He had his first real encounter with severe weather during the March 1993 Superstorm, "The Storm of the Century". Finally, in 2002, his brother Paul decided to take him out to the Great Plains for an authentic chase during the heart of the spring severe weather season. After that chase, there was no turning back, and he has been an addict of severe weather ever since. Marc saw his first tornado on May 15, 2003 after dark near Shamrock, TX. He has seen numerous tornadoes and stunning supercells over the years.
Marc is a member of the WarmSector.com chase team based in Florida. He is often behind the wheel during a chase. Marc also enjoys forecasting and analyzing weather data, and editing storm video with the help of his teammates.
In his free time, Marc enjoys camping, fishing, building Halloween mazes, watching horror films, cooking, and throwing Iron Chef parties.
Interests: Hunting, fishing, gardening, my wife and kids.
Website: http://StormHunt.org, http://kastext.com
Profession: Translator (movies, documentaries)
Favorite chase ever: Quinter, Kansas May 23, 2008
Favorite place to chase: Texas Panhandle
Worst chasing experience: Chasing in western Arkansas
Member of Danish Severe Weather Society since 2003
Profession: IT Technician
Favorite chase ever: Roscoe, Texas May 14, 2008
Favorite place to chase: Texas Panhandle
Worst chasing experience: Chasing in western Arkansas
Member of Danish Severe Weather Society since 2007
Profession: IT Supporter
Favorite chase ever: Greensburg, Kansas May 4, 2007
Favorite place to chase: Texas Panhandle
Worst chasing experience: Omega block in 2006
Member of Danish Severe Weather Society since 2003
Andrew's interest in severe weather was fed to him at an early age. His father had possessed an interest in tornadoes since a young age as well, and was an ESDA storm spotter years before Andrew was even born. That influence, coupled with a good family friend being another huge tornado fan and Meteorologist Ed Kieser from WILL at the University of Illinois sent Andrew on the fast track towards tornado obsession. Those two would bring over plenty of tornado videos for Andrew to stare at in awe before he was forming full sentences. While seeing a tornado hit his hometown was not the basis for his tornado interest as it is in some cases, seeing an F3 tornado pass by out his back door while ravaging his hometown of Urbana, Illinois certainly did not hurt the cause! Andrew had also held a love for photography and videography from a young age. He purchased his very first video camera at age 13 with money saved up from working a paper route, and was filming severe storms as they rolled into central Illinois from then on, making little severe weather video clips to show off to his family.
Andrew would pitch fits when his dad would leave to go on long storm chasing trips with the Atmospheric Sciences team from the University of Illinois, leaving Andrew behind to sit anxiously awaiting new storm video on his dad's arrival home that night. Soon enough, his dad decided Andrew was old enough to venture out into the field with him. Once he had a view of the turbulent skies in the open fields, there was no turning back. He has since combined his love for severe weather and photo/videography into an all around obsession with documenting all forms of severe weather.
Andrew is currently pursuing a Meteorology degree in college, with hopes of doing graduate studies in and launching a career in severe storms research. Whether for research purposes or solely for his own video pleasure, you can count on him being out chasing the wind every year! Visit Andrew's website at http://PrairieStormMedia.com
Bill is a second generation chaser hailing from central Minnesota. Growing up on the western fringe of Minnesota, his father started exposing him to the beauty and power of the northern plains sky as soon as he was old enough to look up. With tens of thousands of chase miles under his belt and over 120 tornadoes spanning a 20+ year chasing career, Bill brings a wealth of first hand experience in the field and an uncanny ability to read the sky.Â Over those years, he has developed a talent for being able gain a position on a storm which captures the ultimate visual experience. His photography and video work has appeared on FOX, CNN, MSNBC, ABC, CBS, NBC and The Weather Channel plus many publications and National Weather Service's SKYWARN training materials. Bill was also a cast member on the reality TV show "Twister Sisters" which aired in late 2007 and early 2008. Bill has a BS in Business Administration from Moorhead State University. When he is not out looking for the worst Mother Nature can throw at him, he enjoys sharpening his photography skills with his family in the forests and along the rivers of northern Minnesota in search of bald eagles and wild wolves.
Scott holds a BA in Geography from the University of Oklahoma and works fulltime as a Geographic Information Systems (GIS) Analyst for a Kansas based wind energy developer. Outside of work Scott's passion in life is observing, documenting, and reporting severe weather. He has had the great fortune to develop friendships with and learn from some of the brightest severe weather forecasters of our time. As a result Scott has seen some of the most amazing supercells and tornadoes the plains have to offer. Over the years Scott has grown to love the Great Plains for the landscapes, small towns, big personalities, and the giant canvas that is the sky. Scott's interests in storms and Geography are not limited to North America. Inspired by Jonathan Finch's work on Bangladesh tornadoes Scott has researching other places around the world that frequently have supercells and tornadoes. At the top of the list is Argentina followed by Australia, South Africa, E India/Bangladesh, SE Europe, and NE China. It is one of Scott's lifetime goals to see a tornado on every continent except Antarctica.
Please visit his website at http://www.ViolentPlains.com
I have been storm chasing for about 6 years. I started chasing storms for the Fire Department in Greene County as a public service. I began doing live streaming for TVN in 2009. I really enjoy chasing and love working with TVN. I am learning more and more every year and canâ€™t wait to finally get out on the plains to chase big supercells.
Ramiro was born and grew up in Buenos Aires, Argentina. He has been interested in extreme weather since he was young, by the end of elementary school. He loves extreme conditions, such as record cold and warm temperatures, heavy rain, destructive winds, intense snowfalls and big hail. He is also very interested in hurricanes and severe thunderstorms, including tornadoes.
Ramiro obtained his Bachelor's degree in Atmospheric Sciences in 2004, his Master's degree in 2007 and is now working on his Ph.D. in the field of climatology. He loves weather forecasting and since 2001 has been a member of a Forecast Group at the Departament of Atmospheric Sciences at the University of Buenos Aires.
When he does not work or perform activities related to meteorology, he enjoys swimming and being outdoors.
MatÃas was born in Buenos Aires, where he lives now. He has loved thunderstorms and severe weather since he was very young, up to the point that he received his first book related to weather at the age of 8. Since only a child, he would "chase" storms from his house's terrace.
MatÃas earned a Bachelor's degree in Atmospheric Sciences in 2004 and is about to complete his Master's. Starting in 2000 he has lead the forecast branch of a company that provides weather and climate forecasts to the agricultural field and from 2001 he has been a part of the Forecast Group at the Departament of Atmospheric Sciences at the University of Buenos Aires.
MatÃas also loves playing sports, being outdoors and soccer.
Romina was born in Buenos Aires, Argentina and lives there today. She loves thunderstorms, especially hail and lightning. She has been collecting weather stories from newspapers since she was 13 years old.
She holds a Bachelor's degree in Atmospheric Science from University of Buenos Aires and she will have her Master's degree in Atmospheric Science in February 2010. Her thesis topic is the climatology of hail in Argentina and she is working in the Climate and Water Institute of the National Institute of Agriculture. Her interests are radar research and weather risks on agriculture production, such as hail damage. Her goals are improving radar products for estimating hail size and developing a complete spatial distribution of hail from radar datasets.
When she doesn't work she likes to watch movies and TV series and dance.
Luciano was born and grew up in OlavarrÃa, Argentina. In 1998 he moved to Buenos Aires city to obtain a degree in meteorology. He has been interested in extreme weather since he was young. He loves thunderstorms, in particular severe thunderstorms with destructive winds, large hail and tornadoes.
Luciano obtained his Bachelor's degree in Atmospheric Sciences in 2006, his Master's degree in 2009 and is now working on his Ph.D. in the field of mesoscale convective systems at the National Weather Service. He loves weather forecasting and since 2001 has been a member of a Forecast Group at the Departament of Atmospheric Sciences at the University of Buenos Aires. His interests are the study of the structure and climatology of mesoscale convective systems in South America using radar and satellite data.
Furthermore, for the last couple of years he has documented the severe storms that have occurred in Argentina.
When he does not work or perform activities related to meteorology, he enjoys walking, being outdoors and assemble and collection airplane models.
Please visit his website at http://SevereStormArgentina.blogspot.com
Richard was born and grew up in Buenos Aires, Argentina. He has been interested in meteorology since he was young, by the age of 12. He loves severe weather, such as heavy rain, destructive winds, big hail, severe thunderstorms and specially tornadoes. He is also very interested in hurricanes and tropical meteorology as well.
Richard earned a Bachelor's degree in Atmospheric Sciences in 2009 and is about to complete his Master's. He loves weather forecasting and since 2002 is a member of a Forecast Group at the Departament of Atmospheric Sciences at the University of Buenos Aires. Actually he works in the National Weather Service of Argentina.
When he does not work or perform activities related to the meteorology, he enjoys riding on bike and being outdoors.
David was born in Rosario, Santa Fe, and grew up in Casilda, Santa Fe. He has been fascinated by storms since he was 8 years old. Since that time he has studied storms as an amatuer and, in the last three years, has been documenting most of the storms where he is based.
Having completed primary and secondary education, David is currently pursuing advanced studies in business administration.
David enjoys the sport of cycling and photography is a hobby of his.
Diego was born in Quilmes, 12 miles away from Buenos Aires. As a child he was afraid of storms and severe weather. That all changed as he grew. He built his own weather station and became interested in severe weather, weather statistics and weather photography.
Diego is an electronics technician and is in the third year of his Computer Science studies. He works as a developer for many weather-related websites and runs his own website, where all of the data recorded by his weather station and the photos and videos he takes of storms in his area are published.
Diego also likes playing soccer with friends and enjoys listening to heavy metal.
Dean and Leslie are both from Independence, Missouri, where you can have all kinds of weather extremes. They experience excessive heat and humidity in the summer, frigid ice storms and thundersnow in the winter and everything in between - including what we all find interesting â€¦ severe weather.
Motivated by a passion and a respect of all things related to the weather, every year their storm chasing endeavors have continued to grow. They add and customize new features to enhance their storm chase vehicle, create unique and one-of-a-kind weather inspired arts and crafts, participate in any weather awareness events to educate themselves and the community about severe weather, and, so far, theyâ€™ve obtained their CERT (Community Emergency Response Team) training certifications and became licensed HAM radio technician operators.
Their most memorable storm chasing experiences seem to occur over Memorial Day Weekends and one in particular will stand out from all the rest for them forever: In 2010, they were near Campo, Colorado, and intercepted a very slow moving isolated supercell by early afternoon, chasing this same cell until dark. It produced several tornadoes as they live streamed this event to TornadoVideos.Net . This chase was the most photogenic they have ever experienced, a tornado with a rainbow next to it!
As a child, Dean remembers lightning striking and splintering the tree in his parentsâ€™ front yard while he was watching just inside the screen door; he was fascinated but frustrated by lightning because he couldnâ€™t catch it on camera. Leslie has dreamed about tornadoes as long as she can remember and usually wakes up upset because in the dream, she never seems to have a camera. Through the years, in Kansas City, there are often thunderstorms around the Fourth of July and Leslie finds herself looking more at the lightning than the fireworks display.
Dean likes spending time at the family farm in Northwest Missouri fishing, ATV riding and 4-wheeling. Leslie loves music (Daryl Hall & John Oates and Todd Rundgren) and going to concerts as well as traveling, so she frequently finds a way to combine both. In addition to stormchasing, they also enjoy photographing wildlife and hunting for morel mushrooms which makes spring a very busy time of year for them.
Visit their website at www.interceptimages.com
My name is Dean Baron. I am 20 years old. I live in New Brighton, MN which is just north of Minneapolis. I go to a local community college just getting my generals done. After that the plan is to head up to St Cloud State likely for a major in land surveying with a minor in GIS (Geographic Information Systems). When I'm not chasing I like doing photography if I have the time, working out, playing/watching hockey in the winter, and just hanging out with friends.
I have been a Skywarn spotter since 2005 and chasing since 2006. I didn't get many chases in during my first couple of seasons but the experience was still invaluble. I think the fascination with severe weather for me is genuinely natural. I don't remember any specific storm that suddenly sparked my interest, I just enjoyed anxiously watching every storm come through. Now that interest has turned in to an absolute fascination, and chasing has turned in to a passion. I am extremely happy I live in a part of the world that allows me to chase that passion.
I have a website at http://MidwestChaser.com and a blog at http://MidwestChaser.blogspot.com
Iâ€™m a 20 year old Entrepreneur, Photographer, and I own my own business. Iâ€™m currently going to school for Radio Broadcasting in Dallas, Texas. Iâ€™ve worked in the radio industry, as well as on-air intern for a major syndicated morning radio show based here in Dallas, Texas.
In the Spring/Summer months my main focus switches over to Severe Weather. Believe it or not when I was a child I was TERRIFIED of storms. Iâ€™d always hide under a blanket when it thundered outside. Then around 6 years ago, my fear turned into a passion. I was standing outside one day with a storm brewing overhead. The tornado sirens went off, and I had this sudden urge run to my dad and ask him to take me to go chase the tornado. And ever since that day the fear turned into passion. I feel so lucky to get to travel out in the spring and summer months to go watch Mother Nature in all its glory. From monster tornadoes to grapefruit sized hail... I love chasing and will be out chasing every storm I can until Iâ€™m no longer able to walk!
Thanks for stopping by my TVN bio page! My name is Michael Stanga, and have ben storm chasing since 2005. I own and operate my personal storm chasing website TheWxPage.com. I am also the site administrator for F5Chaser.Com. I have a B.A degree with a double major in Earth Science and Geography from St. Cloud State University. I currently reside in St. Anthony, MN and am a native Minnesotan. I also founded and run the Minnesota Storm Chasing Convention. I am an Eagle Scout who enjoys storm chasing, photography, and a good hockey game. I also enjoy traveling abroad, as I have been to 10 countries on 3 continents, including Russia and most of Europe, and have also been to 46 U.S. states. Thanks for stopping by!
Todd has been fascinated by severe storms and tornadoes since he was just six years old, and as a result, he began studying severe weather at a very early age. He has been chasing severe weather since 1991 and has a background in meteorology. Every year during April to July, Todd travels from the Mexican Border to Canada searching out severe storms and tornadoes. He started out chasing when he moved to Colorado in 1990 when he went to work for Lockheed Martin Astronautics, during the spring and summer he would take off after work to chase after the storms in the high plains. After 7 years of chasing he was hooked and left his Job at Lockheed Martin Astronautics to start up his own company called Storm Chasing Adventure Tours. Now he takes tour guest out on one week tours looking for severe storms and tornadoes during April - July in Tornado Alley.
He has been featured in numerous television documentaries, news programs, and in magazine articles published around the world since he founded Storm Chasing Adventure Tours in 1997.
Todd has also participated in two hurricanes with the Weather Channel's Jim Cantore, including Hurricane Dennis that came into FL & AL in 2005 and Hurricane Rita which ravaged much of the Louisiana and Texas coasts in 2005.
Todd recently moved to Central America to the country of Belize, where summer never ends and thunderstorms with intense lightning shows can happen any time of the year. During the off-season when he is not chasing storms in tornado alley he operates an Adventure tour company in Belize and sells real estate. He hopes to witness many more types of exciting severe weather in his new home town in Belize when he is not chasing severe weather in tornado alley during April through July in the U.S.A. There website is www.StormChasing.com
Nov 30 2009 13:56:51
I started wearing a light colored pair of polarized sunglasses while chasing storms. I never see any footage of drivers wearing them while going through a HP storm. Does anyone know this trick? If not, give it a try and youll never go without them. The main reason it gets hard to see in a HP storm is the refracted lignt reflection from the water on the windshield. With a good pair of polarized sunglasses, you eliminate most of the reflection from the water and can see much better. Just make sure you dont get too dark, and make sure its a good quality lens.
May 30 2013 06:56:10
Was wondering if it was ever an idea to have another vehicle follow the dominator throughout the season to perform service on the dominator on the road to save time or even perform road-side assistance. For instance oil/lube services and tire work or even pull the dominator out of the mud or ditches. I am a certified technician and i love what you guys do. My #1 dream on my bucket list is to see a tornado from 1/8 of a mile away. You guys are amazing and my heroes. Ive been in 2 damaging tornadoes myself. (Not intentional)
Jun 13 2013 05:15:11
Reed, I got into watching storm chasers because I enjoyed watching your storm chasing style. I think it is awesome how you do not back down from the storms and I love how quick you are to respond when someone needs help. I think you are awesome.