There’s one thing I can say about wheat harvest 2014…it’s not typical.
I was given the morning off (July 14). The guys were going to be moving the equipment to the fields that used to bring us to Limon. I was told that I would have most of the morning to do what I needed to do and get lunches made. Jim would call when they needed me. No big deal…they’d be close to Limon and Taylor could take me to the field.
Sounded like a great plan. If only the wheat would have cooperated. It wasn’t quite ready.
So, I got a call telling me to go to the Pete and follow Scott to the field. Which is what I did. I didn’t look to see what time it was when we got to the field, so I’m going to guess about 1:00 or so. The combines met us there and Chad took his into the wheat to cut a sample. The moisture was a little on the high-end. Let’s give it an hour or so…HURRY UP AND WAIT!
Actually, this is one of my favorite things to do (if I don’t have anything else pressing me to get done) when we’re cutting with others. I enjoy spending time with them and learning more about the people we’re working with.
The first waiting-for-the-wheat-to-dry game was throwing rocks at the corner post and see who can hit something. It was funny how a simple rock being thrown began as a personal challenge for one and turned into a game for them all. Even Jim picked up a couple of rocks and started throwing them.
Yes, you read that right. More rain. It came down in sheets starting just before midnight on Friday night (6/27). Jim was watching the radar and kept me posted how it looked. “Whelp, it looks like it’s raining at the combine but it looks like we won’t get anything here. It’s headed Northeast”. Then he fell asleep on the couch and it began to rain. Well, first I noticed the intense lightning that kept flashing through the closed shades. So I went to the door and realized the storm was headed directly for us.
Yes, that was the way they were describing the storms that were moving into Eastern Nebraska on Saturday night…”The Storm of the Century”.
This particular tornado watch was being referred to as a PDS watch. Meteorologists define a PDS watch as follows:
“When the threat for damage caused by severe convection is unusually high, the Storm Prediction Center (SPC) enhances the wording of its convective watch product with the following statement: THIS IS A PARTICULARLY DANGEROUS SITUATION Such watches are known as “PDS” watches. PDS tornado (TOR) watches are issued when the forecaster has high confidence that multiple strong (F2-F3 on the Fujita Scale) or violent tornadoes (F4-F5 on the Fujita Scale) will occur in the watch area. PDS TOR watches are rare; of 3058 TOR watches issued during the period 1996-2005, only 7% (216) were PDS watches, When compared with regular TOR watches, PDS TOR watches should ideally be associated with a greater risk of strong or violent tornadoes.”