Last Tuesday seemed like a great day for a Minnesota road trip.
Sunny skies, warm conditions, and — because I work Saturdays and Sundays — the day off.
There was a chance of strong thunderstorms, but the forecasts I saw that morning put the timing into the evening hours. Plenty of time to reach a few places in the Mankato and St. Peter areas that were on my photography to-do list, and make it back to the Twin Cities before the storms hit.
The storms, though, had other ideas.
By midday they were rolling across western Minnesota. By mid-afternoon they were nearing the Minnesota River valley.
Raindrops started falling as I finished taking photos at my last stop.
I charted a new course for getting back to the Cities, trying to avoid the worst of the severe weather. As I headed east from St. Peter on State Highway 99, with wind gusts picking up and storm clouds swirling, I noticed an interesting steeple off to my right that seemed like it could make a good photo against the dark sky.
That proved to be the start of an interesting and unexpected diversion on a stormy afternoon. I posted a Twitter story about the experience later in the week; you can follow what happened via those posts:
Update: After posting the story on Twitter last Thursday, I received a lot of feedback — including from someone who knows the two men from the historical society, and can put me in touch with them to share a photo of the church against the stormy sky.
Andrew Krueger is the weekend editor at MPR News. Reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org, or on Twitter @akpix.