Moorcroft, Wyoming. “I will never forget the sight of this monster hailstorm as it breached the hills right in front of us,” says Dobrowner. “It came at us at about 40 miles an hour, raining golf-ball-size hail.” After taking six shots, he and storm chaser Roger Hill dashed for their van when “it became obvious this was no ordinary storm.” National Weather Service meteorologist James LaDue confirms that it was a supercell. Image ©Mitch Dobrowner / National Geographic
Lordsburg, New Mexico. Resembling a mushroom cloud, a monsoon thunderstorm drops a deluge on the desert. The base of this cloud may hang some two miles above the ground. Image ©Mitch Dobrowner / National Geographic
Images are in the July 2012 issue of National Geographic magazine, on newsstands June 26th.
Regan, North Dakota. A dying tornado like this one is said to be in the “roping out” phase. Image ©Mitch Dobrowner / National Geographic
Near Guymon, Oklahoma. Most storms move fast. This one crept over a farming community for more than an hour, bristling with electricity. “No two storms are the same,” says James LaDue, a meteorologist at the National Weather Service. “No two skies are either.” Image ©Mitch Dobrowner / National Geographic
Northfield, Minnesota. Born in a bruising supercell, a funnel cloud looms beyond a cornfield. Image ©Mitch Dobrowner / National Geographic