Getting the Shots: Funnel Clouds in Emporia

If you ever need rain, just invite me to take pictures of alfalfa in your area. I will inevitably bring precipitation with me. I take credit for ending a month-long drought in North Carolina one year.

On our shoot in Emporia, KS, though, I got precipitation in the form of a vicious thunderstorm, complete with high winds and a funnel cloud. It was ugly enough that the native Kansans, who don't scare that easily, were rounding up everyone and heading to the storm shelters.

Our photographer got stuck in Walmart. My partner got to spend an hour in the hotel lobby. 

The factory guy and I were lucky, though. We got stuck at Applebee's, and they were still serving drinks. For the record, light summery drinks like daiquiris are a wonderful choice for funnel clouds….

Fortunately for us, the weather cleared up the next day, and it dried off so fast we were able to make a few passes the next day.

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A rotary cutter set-up. Gorgeous, huh?

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I want to say this was the third or fourth cutting in the field. 

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Still guy and video shooter hard at work. 

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And what I looked like till the whole thing was over.

(Yes, I know it's bad form to flatten windrows, but it was too soggy to flop anywhere else. You can see how wet the field still was from the tire tracks. Ideally, we should have waited another day, but we were up against a deadline. Fortunately, we were cutting at the Factory guy's family operation, and they had a field we could use.)

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