It was a storm that took the small community of Elbow Lake and Grant County by surprise. The storm that rolled through the community on Memorial Day, May 30, knocked down power lines and trees, causing extensive damage.
Grant County Sheriff Mark Haberer said that the clubhouse at the Tipsinah Mounds Golf Course was leveled and destroyed by the tornado and that the National Weather Service (NWS) has confirmed the storm that moved through the area was an EF2 tornado.
Amidst the destruction, Haberer pointed out the bright side — no one was injured in any aspect of the storm.
According to accuweather.com, a storm survey conducted by the NWS on Tuesday confirmed that the tornado was at least EF2 strength and packed winds up to 120 mph. The team also found evidence of multiple vortexes and a path width of at least a half mile, NWS officials said on Twitter.
Haberer said there were numerous grain bins and sheds that were destroyed and thrown like tin cans in fields surrounding Elbow Lake.
He also stated that the county’s emergency management department was still assessing the damage and would have further information on June 6.
The Tipsinah Mounds campground and surrounding park near Pomme De Terre Lake was hit especially hard, and residents on Point Comfort Road on the southern shore witnessed downed power poles and lines toppled over with trees that had been ripped from the ground.
Residents there did not see power returned until late on June 2.
On Grant County Highway 4, which goes through Ashby, a whole section of power poles were toppled. Runestone Electric Association (REA) crews, with help from ALP Utilities, Stearns Electric Association, Legacy Powerline and Integrity Construction continued working until early June 2 to restore power and put in new poles citing extreme damage due to the May 30 storm.