Nevada has Tornadoes Too

After we heard the National Weather Service alert yesterday warning the Spanish Springs area of possible tornado activity, my roommate and I went outside to see if we could spot any for our selves. What we witnessed were clouds spinning counterclockwise, forming tiny ‘nipples’ that dissipated as fast as they formed.

In total we observed three of these above the Pah-Rah Hills to the east of us. Each was racing slightly ahead of a quick moving thunderstorm that was dumping sheets of rain across the desert landscape.

The Reno Gazette-Journal says there have been 79 tornadoes reported since 1962, mostly in western Nevada and Clark County with “a Silver State tornado alley along Interstate 80.” They got their information from the website

The website lists only three incidents of damage from tornadoes in Nevada:

  • May 26, 1964, when a small tornado damaged outbuildings on a ranch near Yerington. A man was struck and injured by flying debris.
  • July 16, 1973, when a small tornado touched down six miles north of Reno. One person was injured.
  • March 30, 1992, when one home was shifted and another lost part of its roof in southern Las Vegas.

The last time the NWS issued a tornado warning for any part of Nevada was July 21, 2008.

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