Waterspouts - Islamorada, FL - November 6th, 2004
by Martin Kucera
(c) 2004 - FloridaLightning.com
florida keys waterspout
Florida Bay as seen from Islamorada, FL at 5pm on November 6th, 2004
Wow, this was completely unexpected, as usual. Busy Saturday afternoon at work. I`d notice the sky was quite disturbed. A weak cold
front passed through the Keys just yesterday. Couple of hours before the sunset it sprinkled and cloud lines started to go up
everywhere. What was strange was that the outside felt so dry and it was also quite cool. You could see tall towering Cummulus
everywhere, it also seemed like cloud lines went up on both bay and ocean side at the same time.

I told my co-worker to keep an eye on the cloud line over the Florida Bay since I had to work inside. Well, he didn`t. I went out just to
check things out at about 5 pm to find a huge waterspout about 10 miles north of Islamorada, FL. It was so far away but even so it
looked big. Now the funny thing. The entire wet season I`d been hauling my backpack full of cameras basically everywhere with me.
Since about the start of November I decided not to carry it anymore since the active stormy weather pattern seemed to end. Big
mistake. Especially today. Only equipped with a little not so good digital camera I tried my best and the picture bellow is the result. You
can hardly see anything but what the weather looked like. The waterspout is barely visible just to the right of the middle houseboat.
florida keys waterspout
That certainly got me started...thinking if there`s one there must be more on a day like this. So I got restless and
started walking around the beach. Went to see the sunset and as I was looking around I noticed the bottom of the
ocean side cloud line and a fat tube coming down from it. Too bad I did not have a car available at the moment
plus I had to work plus I only had the bad camera.

Well, I borrowed  a truck from my other co-worker and decided to go for it. Got to Outback Steakhouse in
Islamorada about 2 miles south of where I work. The spout was already fighting the heavy rain next to it but did
very well since a stand-byer told me the spout has already been there for some 20 minutes. It never dissipated
before my eyes and it just kept moving south-west within the cloud line and the rain. It just was after sunset when
it got very difficult to see it so I went back to work.
Within the same ocean side cloud line there was one more tiny waterspout but way north of me and also a thick
funnel cloud that tried to develop but didn`t. It seemed like waterspouts very everywhere today.
florida keys waterspout
Just before sunset. You could see the rugged cloud line, overlooking Florida Bay north-west from Islamorada, FL
florida keys waterspout
The ocean side waterspout  when I first noticed it. It took me another 20 minutes before I was able to photograph it.
florida keys waterspout
The same waterspout about 20 min later....it just kept fighting the rain till it moved far away and out of my view.
florida keys waterspout
florida keys waterspout
Perhaps I had to go back to work but on a day like this it did not matter. I got finished at about 11 pm. From the
same parking lot  where I first saw the spout now I noticed a pretty good lightning show over the ocean.
Unbelievable I thought to myself. So its cold and dry outside and  we get more lightning than we got in July and
August. Just hope I got some nice shots since It very well could be the last ones in 2004. After some 14 hours
spent at work today and only four hours of sleep the night before it certainly turned out to be a great day.
florida keys waterspout
(c) 2004 - www.FloridaLightning.com