Thursday 15 May 2014

2014 Day 3 - Hays (KS) to Cheyenne (WY)

Another non-active day weather-wise, so we decided to head farther northwest to get into position for *hopefully* something worth chasing on Sunday. Driving west along the I-70 from Hays (KS) after what was a chilly start with temperatures down to 4C (39F), we paid a visit to McDonald's in Colby (KS) to make good use of their $1 drink offer once more, before continuing across the border into Colorado. By this stage there were signs of snow patches on south-facing slopes either side of the Interstate, and some of the patches looked surprisingly deep.
Patches of reasonably deep lying snow over the high plains of CO and WY
We continued to wind our way west, then north, through Greeley (CO) with the destination aim of Cheyenne (WY). A quick visit to use the free Wifi in McDonald's at Eaton (CO) (and purchase another drink) we eventually arrived in Cheyenne (WY) by evening. The route north of Nunn (CO) and across the CO/WY border reveals some fantastic scenery with the Rockies to the west, with patches of snow all over, again some reasonably deep. Another juicy steak was enjoyed at a nearby Applebee's in the evening, although I am intrigued as to why they are so insistent on giving you the bill before you've even finished eating your meal?!

Fun fact of the day: We're currently higher than Ben Nevis - Cheyenne is ~1,800m ASL, Ben Nevis being a mere 1,344m.

Weather-wise, each day has produced numerous high-based showers, but nothing spectacular, due to a lot of cool, dry air at the surface. It is hoped that as the upper pattern changes over the weekend, the upper ridge will shift a little further east allowing the mean flow to back to the southwest, advecting warmer and ultimately more moist air across the northern Plains. This coupled with any shortwaves in westerly flow aloft could allow isolated severe storms to develop across western Nebraska/eastern Wyoming/South Dakota on Sunday afternoon and evening. It looks like a case of waiting patiently for the cap to be eroded locally...

STORM CHASE 2014 STATS thus far
McDonald's tally: 5
States visited: 5


  1. American people are extremely time conscious and hate waiting for their bill, so most places give you the bill before you finish. It is not an insult, and they are not trying to rush you, it is just a cultural difference. I think the reason we are so time conscious is purely because of the number of hours we spend at work. We have less vacation time and longer work weeks than most other countries, so we are always in a hurry. I think that this limited amount of free time is also the reason there are so many fast food places and that there is an obesity issue. When you spend 50+ hours a week at a desk, you have very little time to cook/workout and you are stressed, fat, and always in a hurry to get daily chores done. PS. if you are in Texas, there are much better places to get steaks than Applebee's. Branch out!