Sure, everything's bigger in Texas. But four feet of hail from one storm? That's what the National Weather Service, the Texas Department of Transportation and a local sheriff say happened Wednesday in an area north of Amarillo.
The National Weather Service office in Amarillo even posted a photo on its Facebook page, but that wasn't enough to convince skeptics.
"Serious do not think this is 100% hail!!!" commented one person.
Theories posted by users on the office's Facebook page include weird weather caused by military experiments or aircraft "chem trails."
"It's a lite dusting of hail on some damn rocks," said one person, referring to the image of a firefighter standing next to what could be taken for boulders.
"I can assure you we do not have big rocks like that in West Texas," Krissy Scotten, a spokeswoman for the weather service office in Amarillo, told msnbc.com.
As for the darkish color, "we're very dusty around here" due to drought so the hail quickly darkened, Scotten said. The image, she added, was sent by the Potter County Fire Department and the firefighter seen in it is standing where meltwater had cut through the hail. "That was four feet of ice," she added, not mud mixed in with it as some readers suggested.
The Texas Department of Transportation confirms it was deep hail dumped by a storm that dropped visibility to near zero at times.
"You're looking at four foot deep" hail in one stretch, NBC affiliate KAMR-TV quoted Brian Thomas, sheriff of Potter County, as saying. "This was just one of those weird storms that just sat here and came down extremely heavy in this one area."
But Jose Garcia, chief forecaster at the weather service in Amarillo, told msnbc.com it probably wasn't the most hail the region has seen.
"Five to six feet deep hail" fell in nearby Dalhart, Texas, in 1993 during a very similar storm, he said. It took almost a month for some roads to reopen as the compact ice melted slowly. "It was almost like huge snow drifts," he said.
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