I often get asked what kind of equipment I use for storm chasing. Every chaser/spotter is different. Some go "light", and some go "all-out". With my experience, there are a few things I do recommend. Here is what I have with me when Im out on the road.
- Laptop computer with GRlevelX radar software (GRlevelX software only runs on Windows software)
- Laptop mount made by Ram Mount. link: www.rammount.com/
- Samsung tablet with Radarscope app. Also works with Apple products. link: radarscope.io/#features
- GPS 'Puck' that plugs into the usb hub on a laptop that works with GRlevelX software. link: usglobalsat.com/p-62-bu-353-w.aspx#images/product/large/62.jpg
- Sony Cybershot camera with Class-10 SD cards. I like using higher Gigabytes just for the satisfaction of having enough memory storage. You can never have enough memory space. Right?
- Nikon D3200 SLR camera.
- GoPro camera White Edition. Nice for timelapse videos and recording real time video from the dash board.
- Tripods for cameras. I carry two.
- Cell phone.
- Verizon MiFi Jetpack for mobile WiFi to run radar software.
- Various charging cords and 12 volt charging sockets to keep electronics up and running. I also use a Cobra 300 watt power converter for the laptop.
- Road maps. Sometimes you just have to use a paper map to plan and find your routes.
- Midland CB radio model 75-822. I use this to communicate with my fellow chasers if we are teaming up on a storm, and also monitor NOAA weather radio frequencies. link: midlandusa.com/product/75-822cb-radio/
- Wilson 'little Will' CB antenna.
That is about it.
For beginners starting off I highly recommend downloading the Radarscope app if you have a Apple or Android device. There are many features with that app that other apps can't compete with. Take time to learn the unique features with this radar app. It literally comes with almost everything a storm chaser or spotter will ever need in a radar app.
If you haven't already, sign up for a local Skywarn class. They are usually in the spring time and there is alot of good information. If you want, you can become an official Skywarn Spotter to help relay information and reports to your local Weather office.
And finally, Bring a camera. You never know if you will have the once in a lifetime opportunity to take some incredible photos while you are out and about. I usually use a hand-held digital point-and-shoot camera. Most mobile devices these days come equipped with awesome cameras installed in them that are able to record video and take decent quality pictures.
Any questions, feel free to ask anytime... - Joe
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