The Stormy Beauty over the Midwest Great Plains

By all accounts we were extremely lucky as we travelled along the Oregon Trail in May. Although it was tornado season we managed to get along the trail very dry and quite sunny until Portland, it didn’t mean I could not miss what was happening within sight in the skies over the vast plains of the Midwest. I had been taking photos in wondrous sunshine at Chimney Rock, Nebraska, my bald head being beaten by the sun, but looking the other way was a great huge thunderhead rolling over.

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Now then, many of my American friends see this all the time and it must be stressed that to us Brits this is very different.. and to see with your own eyes… very huge! Photos don’t come close to showing the scale and height of the clouds. I write this as the usual grey drizzle clouds appear over Cumbria. So far removed. It cast me back to memories of climbing high in the altitude of the Andes, Argentina. Storms… when they should be called more than storms. When we arrived at our next stop we heard the above cloud did turn into a supercell and tornadoes, bringing hail the size of golf balls. No, we did not go chasing 😉

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We were heading west, toward the Rockies of course. The cold air sweeps down from their and meets the warm air over the plains. The dramatic effect is the forming of storms powerful and gigantic. Crazy people go following them, the wise get ready to maybe go underground. But from the distance we just had to marvel at the beauty. Missouri, Kansas and Nebraska we had crossed and then into Wyoming. Looking back you could see right through into the edges of the infamous Tornado Alley and hope everyone was safe.

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From a distance it was views of natural beauty. Great clouds racing, rising and dancing through the skies. Thankfully over the horizon, but a wonder to see none the less.

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Written by Paul Steele

Paul is the founder and Editor of the site. An avid hiker and trekker. Travel, adventure and photography are passions that he combines to make his articles here. Likes to see the positive in everything.

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