Back in 2011, a large tornado destroyed part of Trenton, Georgia, which is in the valley to the east of Sand Mountain, where we live.
On Wednesday, at Bible Study, we learned that the storm system heading our way had already caused some school districts to announce closures for the following day (Thursday). Man oh man! It was going to be bad!!
Our local meteorologist is in our Bible Study class and he explained that, when the systems hit west to east, Sand Mountain can do a good job of breaking them up. (Did that mean between our front yard and our backyard since we live right on top??) He said, when they slide up, from southwest to northeast, they can parallel the mountain and that’s when the bad tornadoes can occur. After Bible Study, I asked him to clarify. I said, “So, since we are right on top of the mountain, we’re safe right?”
He replied, “Not at all.”
The system was supposed to hit us around 3:30 the following day (Thursday). The next morning, Brian was up at the crack of dawn (literally) preparing. All outdoor items were put away, the American flag was taken down, the wooden porch rockers were turned upside-down, and tied together, and the “tornado corner” in the garage (which is part of the basement, and underground, and was prepared. Brian also pulled out our tornado helmets (they’re actually bike helmets), and checked them for scorpions and black widows. God bless Brian!. Finally, we all packed small bags with a couple of changes of clothes and our toiletries. We stored those in the basement.
Since I figured it was going to be a late night, I took a nap at 2:00. As the big, dark clouds started to roll in, we hunkered down inside, waiting for the weather radio to start blasting every few minutes with watches and warnings. The rain was supposed to start around 3:15.
At 3:30, it still wasn’t raining. I checked the weather again. The update said the rain would start at 4:15. Nope. I checked again. A new update said 5:30. Nope. It was nice and actually warm outside and we were getting bored so we untied the wooden rockers, and sat out on the porch, watching the dark clouds (that still weren’t dropping any water on us). The wind gusted every few minutes but, when it was not blowing, we could hear the frogs singing in the woods. It was a beautiful night!
We decided to head inside later, and turned on the TV. It was after dark when it finally started raining. We had some good wind and plenty of rain but the weather radio didn’t make one peep all night long.
Last Spring is when we learned how much fun (sarcasm intended) it is to live here during the Spring when the big systems come barreling through. It was around that time that we discovered Ryan Hall Y’all on YouTube. He is an independent meteorologist who has a team of storm chasers working with him. Best of all, he has a great sense of humor.
Ryan and his team will cover these large storm events for hours on end and he is very entertaining and informative (lots of videos and pictures are sent in from all over). He and his team also take time to explain things that your local weatherman doesn’t have time to cover. Ryan and his team also collect donations, and sends supplies to hard-hit areas.
So, the next time a big system is coming across the country, I recommend tuning in for his live coverage. You’ll love it! And, you’ll know exactly when to grab your bicycle helmets, and run to the basement. Don’t forget to check for scorpions and black widows!
- Wait Just a Dadgum Minute! Tornadoes Travel on Mountains?!
- “HOLD ON TO SOMETHING AND DO *NOT* LET GO!” Funnel Cloud Brings Sudden Mayhem and We FREAKED OUT! (includes video)
- Almost Water Blasted Right Out of Bed + A TORNADO!!
- Flood and a Tornado! (+ pictures)
- CRAZY Wind and the Shower Tilt-a-Whirl – WHOO HOO!!
- We Got the House We Wanted!
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