May 23, 2017 § Leave a comment
Standing outside on a clear day around lunch time recently, the peace was interrupted by screams and a flapping that resembled a jet engine. At a camp site a little way away there was a small tornado tearing apart the ongoing lunch preparations for a group and trying to destroy their canopy. The dust rising in the swirling column of air included lunch debris and looked like smoke.
Screams started coming ftom the next campsite in the dust devil’s path. But just as it a arrived there, it rose high enough to spare them.
In touring the area later, it was obvious that the dust devil had destroyed a tent in a campsite before arriving at the luncheon group.
This episode reminded us of a time some years ago when we were camped at the Great Sand Dunes National Park in Colorado. We had strapped our awning to the picnic table in case of wind even though it was a peaceful calm day. Sometime in the afternoon while we were sitting in the trailer reading, we were shaken by a gust of wind and we could see the picnic table through the window rise off the ground almost as high as the top of the trailer. Almost immediately afterward, everything was back to normal as if nothing had happened. Although we were still breathing hard.
We’ve seen dust devils in fields many times and they seem so peaceful but they can pack a punch.