May 11 Storm Travel

As many of you may recall May 11th , Mother’s Day brought storms across much of the country.  I began my drive home that day, starting in Colorado Springs and eventually ending up in Omaha, NE.

I knew I was going to be driving in storms that day, but I have driven in thunderstorms before and wanted to get out of Colorado before the snow started there. I’ll take rain over snow almost anyday!

So, several hours into this day’s nine hour drive things started looking a little sketchy and someone at the travel plaza where I was gassing up mentioned a tornado. I looked at the sky, decided it wasn’t that bad and headed out again.  Well let me tell you it kept getting worse, as it turned out I was driving into the storm, catching up with it!

You know it is bad when you are passed up by storm chase vehicles, yes two of them!  I’ve never seen one of these before on the road and I really hope I never have the opportunity to see one again!  It’s sort of like; you don’t want Jim Cantore to visit your town! This is what these vehicles look like, somewhat like a small tank without the guns.

Storm Chase Vehicle

This is what it looks like as it is passing you up on the interstate.  Don’t worry this is an image I got off the internet; I was not crazy enough to be taking a picture while driving in this storm.

Chase vehicle driving A

Somewhere around Lincoln, NE I drove out from under the storm and the highway patrol was closing Interstate 80 for traffic heading west, into the storm. Also another first for me, a storm that was not a snowstorm, which was so bad they were not letting people head into it!

Arriving safe and sound in Omaha, checked into my hotel and turned on the news for the weather. This is one ugly weather map!


I drove through a lot of hail this day and from the sound it made while hitting my vehicle non stop, I am really amazed no windows were broken, that’s how loud it was.  Judging by the dents it left in my van I’m guessing it was somewhere between marble size and quarter size.


Will this experience stop me from driving to so many guilds for workshops and lectures? No Way!  We must quilt!


Pat Speth author of:  Nickel Quilts,   More Nickel Quilts,    Amazing Nickel Quilts,  Nickel Quilts & Borders, and The Big Book of Nickel Quilts

To schedule a Nickel Quilt lecture or workshop contact Pat at the email below.










5 thoughts on “May 11 Storm Travel

  1. The quilters at Colorado Springs Quilt Guild wanted to make your trip memorable and sounds like we did. Thanks for the wonderful presentation and workshop. Glad you make it home safe and sound.

  2. It sounds like you had a harrowing experience. Glad to hear you got home safely. I hope I never see one of those storm chasers driving past me.

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