Michigan “Straight Line Wind” Thunderstorm Damage | April 2014


I was making Italian subs for everyone last night when Rick mentioned we had a storm headed our way.

It was right before dusk, and the clouds rolled in heavy.

I kept one eye on the subs and one on the window.

It was then, I noticed leaves and debris swimming in the air.

They were way up high against the dark sky,

and moving sideways like fish in a pond.

I forgot about the subs and found the children in the living room.

We had Rick’s brother, girlfriend, and their 3 children with us for the weekend.

Including this beautiful, newborn, baby niece of ours, Welly Anne:

Carrie & Pat and Welly

I wasn’t taking any chances.

I yelled for everyone to go down to the basement immediately.

We went down into our walk out and watched the hail hit the windows like I’ve never seen before.

The winds intensified quickly and it seemed as though the windows could blow at any moment.

My hubby seemed to be in some sort of “HAIL TRANCE”,

so I took charge and ordered everyone to follow me into our storm room way in the back of our basement.

It was then, the lights went out, so it was difficult to get down a crowded hall full of “stuff”.

My youngest had her phone on, so that helped.

We made it there safely and waited until it ended.

When we came back upstairs, this is what we saw.

Hail covered the deck/ground and the winds moved our grill/chairs.


Then my daughter noticed one of our favorite Oaks was on the ground 🙁

I just photographed a wreath on this tree a couple weeks ago.

It landed directly onto our DIY brick fire pit.

Even the stumps got it.

Tree down

Here’s a tree on the water where the roots came up in our next door neighbor’s yard.

Next door tree down

I’ve seen golf ball size hail, I’ve seen little hail.

I lived in the South for years and never witnessed this much at once (there was no snow on the ground).

We now know the winds increased to over 70 mph and where categorized as

“Straight Line Winds”.

Seemed like a tornado to me.

Hail in Michigan
Hail 2

My poor hubby has been out there most of the day.

I can’t help much because of my back issues.

Michigan Storm

We were thinking we could use the big log to make a new bench for our fire pit, or even a dock 🙂

You never know.

Rick w: tree 2

Michigan Storm 2

Here’s a Pine tree by our driveway that our neighbor cut down because it was leaning towards their drive.

Very sad to see her go.
Pind Down

I know the storm could have been a lot worse.

I am a very thankful Redhead tonight that no one was hurt, and our home will be fine.

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17 Responses

  1. debbiedoos says:

    That is crazy scary Julie! We had a hail storm here back a few years ago. The damage it did to homes , roofs, cars. ALL so bad! I am thankful no one was hurt!

  2. So glad that everyone is okay. Those of us that live in Florida know what straight line winds can do – so glad that your family is safe and you didn’t have any damage to your home.

  3. we were in Sterling Heights doing some shopping and having dinner yesterday…the sky got dark just as we were leaving to come home to Ontario…whereabouts do you live? I’m so glad we missed that!! Hope everyone is ok…sorry to see your property suffered some damage!

  4. Kristi Dodson-Skinkis says:

    OMG! Glad everyone is alright! We live near Green Bay, WI. We got the edge of that storm… a few drops of rain and a bit of wind… just a normal icky spring day. In Manitowoc, south of G.B. it was worse, it blew a roof off a school and other places are flooded.. power is out and things are a mess. Nothing even close to what you got!! The storm must have really picked up some steam over Lake Michigan!! I am crossing my fingers after the horrible cold and snowy winter the spring AND summer will be calm!! … and a few nice days. Maybe you can have a few fires with the wood from that tree?

    • Julie says:

      A few fires for sure! I think our dramatic weather may continue…:( Thanks for stopping by Kristi, and thank you for your good wishes!

  5. Pamela says:

    Wow! That is scary! So glad that everybody is safe.

  6. Teresa Mucha says:

    Scary to see the aftermath. We have had some of those in the last couple if years here in Virginia. Never remember having anything like them before and I have lived here most of my life. Some of ours they even classify as Derechos. It is scary watching our trees when those storms hit. One that we had was just wind and it hit at night. Glad everyone is ok and from one redhead to another, glad you were on your a game .

    • Julie says:

      I was just researching the Derechos…I’ve never heard of any of these crazy wind terms! Thank you Teresa! XO

  7. Leslee Rau says:

    You seem to have the most incredible weather in your corner of the planet ! Being from California I have never even heard of straight line wind. Sounds terrifying and so damaging as your pics showed. You all are a tough breed out there! We wimp out if temps fall below 50. Thank heavens you are all safe. Couldn’t you use a break about now? How about a tall order of “spring” ?

  8. Leena says:

    Thank goodness y’all were ok! That must have been frightening! I’m glad that the trees that fell stayed away from your home! Storms like that can come up so quickly and be so forceful! Take care, Hugs, Leena

  9. Kathy says:

    We exerienced the same thing in mid-Michigan! Trees down everywhere, siding off the house, many barns blown down in our area and just got power restored yesterday! Crazy….scary stuff.

  10. I am so relieved that you are all safe and didn’t suffer major damage. I have never experienced tornado or tornado like winds (hurricane’s for me at the Jersey Shore) and I hope I never do. Be safe my friend!

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