Most sensible people run for shelter when facing Mother Nature’s fury. Not Brandon Clement. He and his Subaru Crosstrek head straight for it.
Based in Terry, Mississippi, Clement is a storm chaser. He owns a garden art business, but he spends the spring storm season tracking severe weather across the Plains. He trusts his specially equipped Crosstrek to carry him through severe weather conditions. “The Crosstrek has the reliability I need with All-Wheel Drive (AWD),” he says. “I like its excellent safety record and fuel efficiency. It’s had to get me through rough conditions − everything from snow to pretty deep water. The day I bought it, I got no farther than 10 miles down the road before I ran into a hailstorm.”
Clement was in Oklahoma last spring, out in the middle of nowhere, when the weather services posted a tornado warning. “The only access I had to the storm cell was through muddy, rutted roads,” he says. “The Subaru ran through them with no problem.”
Heading into harm’s way to keep tabs on some of the planet’s most deadly phenomena is a lifelong fascination for Clement. “I chase because when I was a kid growing up in Louisiana, I was fascinated by storms,” he says. “When I was old enough to drive, I took myself to them.”
Clement’s Crosstrek will soon have heavier tires and a supercharger, but for this trip, he was fully equipped for what turned out to be the most active stretch of the season. The photos speak for themselves.