Here, in the land of plenty we can have some truly spectacular summer storms. When the temperatures heat up we have not only thunder boomers but we live with the potential for tornadoes touching down.
Last Saturday, my area was host to a wind, hail, rain, thunder storm for the record books. I took these pictures as the storm moved into the area. It didn't actually hit until about 5 hours after these pictures were taken. Years ago, the nearby large city was hit with a massive tornado. It's legacy, is people in the region get very nervous when big storm systems hit now. We have a very good storm warning system that takes effect very quickly when systems move into the capital and surrounding area, keeping people informed.
Living in a region where tornadoes are reality means I've been exposed to a few of them. I remember as a child watching a tornado move across the fields before my grandmother ushered us into the root cellar. Afterwards we drove out to inspect the damage. Minor really, only a few granaries moved to new locations. I've learned that unless the sky turns bizarre colors and is heavy feeling to not stress too much. Once we have confirmation of a tornado touching down, if it's near where I live, then and only then will I move into the basement washroom with my blankets, dogs and battery radio. My house has been in the "path" a number of times. Mostly when this happens I worry about the animals outside and cross my fingers.
Earlier, prior to taking these pictures I did see a small funnel cloud but it disappeared fairly quickly and I kept working the dogs. This storm did produce winds in excess of 130km/hour and hail ranging from pea to golf ball size. My house didn't get the fierce part of the storm and had no damage aside from trees down and stuff blown around. I thought the clouds looked beautiful. Hard to imagine how something so pretty can be so destructive.