This section includes storm chasing related picnics, parties, conventions, or other similar events that have taken place in the year of 2003.

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NSCC Music Presentation For 2003 (Chases Until 2002)


Here is a picture of the 2003 annual storm chasers convention getting underway at the West Village Holiday Inn conference room in Golden, Colorado on February 1, 2003. Over 100 chasers showed up for this event from California to Florida.
This picture shows the banquet and dinner for the 2003 chaser convention in the dining / ball room of the Holiday Inn in Golden, Colorado. There was a cocktail bar, and banquet of great food for all the chasers who attended the convention.
Here is a picture of Roger Hill giving a detailed explanation on his well-documented South Dakota chase in June 2002 of an F4 wedge tornado. This man has seen more tornadoes recently than some chasers seen in a lifetime and is one of the most avid and devoted chasers out there.
This picture shows veteran chaser, Tim Marshall, in the lower-right side of the picture giving a great presentation of tornado damage assesments.
Here is another picture of veteran chaser Tim Marshall explaining his many years of chasing. These so called "veteran" chasers have chased for over 25 years, started long before the advent of cell-phones and "internet / library data-stops", and even worked for the weather research community as scientists.
This is a picture of a "HITPR", or Hardened In-situ Tornado PRobe. It is a tempered, 1/4" thick milled steel "chinese hat" that is aerodynamically clean. The device is filled with special instruments to measure windspeeds and directions INSIDE strong to violent tornadoes. The electronics are attached to the inner surface of the "hat" and another steel circular piece with a seal forms the bottom. This device also has been wind-tunnel tested for aerodynamics and is also bullet proof. The holes in the unit are for the wind and pressure sensors and the unit is painted a high-visibility red. This unit came within 100 feet of a strong tornado just recently.
This picture shows the former "Weathervine" storm intercept team standing in the snow near the Rocky Mountains west of Denver on February 2, 2003 after the convention finished. From left to right is myself, Jeff Gammons (KG4PGA), Kirsten Mc Clung, and Jason Foster (N3PRZ).
It started snowing hard during the evening of February 2, 2003 in Golden, Colorado after the convention finished. Jeff Gammons (KG4PGA) tosses a snow ball at me as the chasers (especially those from places like Florida) enjoy the break from the warm weather down south! By the way, 24 hours earlier, Denver had a record-high of near 70 degrees!


This is the banner for the Wellington Radio Club who went to great efforts to once again provide myself and the former "Weathervine" storm intercept team with this pavilion at Wellington Village Park in Palm Beach County, Florida. Larry Lazar (KS4NB) is the organizer for the Wellington Radio club and myself / Jeff Gammons (KG4PGA) for the annual SE Storm Chaser Picnic.
The picnic gets underway with great food and drinks! Roughtly 30 people signed up for this event, with some coming as far as Maryland and Minnesota! The picnic had great food, a video session for all the chasers who attended, and even some great HAM radio / DX sessions hosted by the Wellington Radio Club members.
This is a picture of Jeff Gammons (KG4PGA) and fiance / chase partner (yes, she chases too) Kersten Mcclung in front of their chase vehicle at the picnic.
Here is a picture of some verteran chasers speaking with Jeff Gammons including Jim Leonard ("Cyclone Jim") and Jim Edds. Both of these chasers where chasing hurricanes and storms before I was even born! The vehicle to the right is my Ford Escape SUV outfitted with the "Weatherlab" portable weather station.
Video equipment was set up for all kinds of viewing in any format. A VHS VCR, two TV's, 3 DV capeable camcorders, and laptop with external speakers to handle DVD video, digital video, even play MP3's for high-energy music! There was also literature / pictures brought in for browsing. The chaser videos brought in by Jim Leonard and Jim Edds would literally "blow you away"!
Adding to more exitement at the picnic, severe weather rolls in from the southwest. In this picture, Larry Lazar (KS4NB) has already took down the HF and VHF antennas, and a dark outflow cloud rolls across the sky. Some of these storms produced large hail and high winds, but thankfully not around here. There was some "make you jump" lightning hits and rain, however.
Here is a view of the "Weatherlab" weather station atop the Ford Escape SUV with some storm clouds gathering in the background.
A video frame grab, from right under our pavilion at the picnic, shows a close hit of lightning streaking across the sky behind a radio tower less than a mile away. These strikes were loud!


On Sunday, June 22, 2003, National Geographic filmed a documentary on Myself and the former "Weathervine" storm intercept team as part of their productions here in the United States (while on assignment from the UK). The main subject was severe weather, hurricanes, and lightning. The day began with Myself, Jason Foster (N3PRZ), Jeff Gammons (KG4PGA), Dave Cornwell (KG4PGD), Kersten Mcclung, and Doug Kiesling "lightning boy" meeting together at Jeff's house in Okeechobee, Florida. The three members of the National Geographic production crew arrived and we started with a detailed forecast of the weather for the day. Not expecting severe weather that day, we focused mostly on procedures and filming of how we go about chasing. We call this a "mock chase". We started out driving into West Palm Beach, then back west around the south side of the lake through Clewiston, then up highway 27 to Lake Wales. We went over all chasing procedures in great details along with equipment usage, communications, even "what to do" if lughtning really did threaten. We formed a caravan of four cars, with my Ford Escape, bristling with the new Weatherlab II weather station and antennas, leading the way. All and all, despite negociating light drizzle, it was a great and fun day and National Geographic did a great job at covering this special event!

This is a video frame-grab taken by Jason Foster of Jeff Gammons and myself looking at data on two laptops at Jeff's house. We are showing how we go through the first and most important part of a chase day ... Forecasting!
National Geographic films me walking through a field near Lake Wales, Florida as I demonstrate lightning safety. The camera man and producer are to the left and took several takes of me walking through the field. Video frame-grab by Jeff Gammons.
In this picture the three film-crew members are to the left, including the producer and camera man. They are filming me to the left (out of frame) for a lightning safety demonstration. The remainder of the former "Weathervine" chase team is to the right, including Kersten, Dave Cornwell, Jeff Gammons, and Doug Kiesling. Also note that Lake Wales, Florida, actually has real "hills". Video frame-grab by Jason Foster.

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