Major Hail Storm- Oklahoma City Metro May 16th, 2010

This was the most intense hail storm that I have witnessed in many years of chasing out on the plains. Considering the fact that we weren’t even planning on chasing this day, it was quite a surprise as well. We were documenting some of the damage left in the wake of the Norman, OK tornado of May 10th when this cell popped up on radar. It started looking good so we decided to go after it and boy are we glad we did! The overall tornado potential was pretty low with this storm so we decided to go for the hail instead. We intercepted the hail core in the town of Forest Park where we found shelter under a small chapel overhang. Our Canadian chaser friends pulled fully under this overhang, but Dave and I only put the front part of my Xterra under this overhang since our hail guards would protect the vehicle. However, our windshield hail guard might not have taken all the weight of the hail that did end up falling so it was a good move putting at least the front part of my truck under the overhang. It was only moments later that the hail began to fall and wow was it intense! Mostly ping pong to golf ball size hail fell but there were a few larger stones mixed in there, and tons of it ended up falling over the 11 minute barrage! So much so that it looked like it had snowed! Unfortunately there was a nest of small birds in a nearby tree that suffered incredibly during this storm. Many were killed and that was tough to watch happen. Overall there were many reports of damage around the OKC Metro area on this day, a day I’ll remember for sure!

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