Storm Chasers Looking for a Thrill

Storm Chasers Looking for a Thrill

It's one of the most awesome sights in nature, a tornado ripping across the Great Plains.

Most of us will never get to see a twister, but you just might if you sign up for a vacation with this guy.  Roger Hill runs storm-chaser tours for those who want to see a tornado first hand.

"It's amazing how addicting storm chasing is," Hill said.

Customers with Hill's silver lining tours pay up to three thousand dollars for a ten-day trip aboard one of these vans.

They come from all over.  There's Michael Pare, for instance, an I.T. manager from Maryland.  Mark Rosengarten, a science teacher from New York.  And Bob Seifert, a mortgage broker from California.  This is his twelfth trip.  He's such a tornado fan that he's got one tattooed on his leg!

"21 tornados altogether we've seen," Seifert said.

There's also a professional photographer from the Netherlands, a teacher from Germany, and a computer-network engineer from Northern Ireland.

Driving 600 miles a day is perfectly common on one of these tours, often through pounding rain and lightning.

The tour guides use Doppler radar and other high-tech weather gear to pinpoint storms.  They stress they put passengers' safety first.

When it all comes together, the result is amazing.

Driving hundreds of miles every day with a bunch of strangers is not everyone's idea of a vacation. And all those miles can be pretty grueling.  But, Bob Seifert sums up the attraction this way:

"This is my passion.  It's just awe-inspiring."