The forecast Thursday was for intense, perhaps long-track tornadoes.

Instead, northwest Kansas received hail and high winds ó gusting at speeds just slightly less than 100 mph in Goodland ó as thunderstorms swept through the area.

The wind was strong enough to cause damage in far northwest Kansas, and closed Interstate 70 for a short time.

Possible funnel clouds were spotted in Cheyenne County south of Wheeler, in Rawlins County near McDonald and a possible wall cloud near Russell Springs in Logan County.

It was the wind in northwest Kansas, however, that ruled the weather scene.

According to the National Weather Service in Goodland, the peak wind speed hit 91 mph in Goodland at 6:25 p.m. Mountain time.

The St. Francis Airport measured a wind gust of 78 degrees at 7:15 p.m. Mountain time. Atwood, Colby, Mingo and Ruleton all measured wind speeds in excess of 70 mph.

The weather bureau received a report of severe damage in Kanorado in Sherman County as a result of the wind, and power lines were blown down as winds kicked up dust, reducing visibility to zero and closing I-70 west of Colby.

Hail varied in size, but there were multiple reports of it in excess of 1 inch in diameter.

As strong as the storm was, what it didnít do was cause temperatures at the Hays Regional Airport to plummet to well below freezing. Temperatures at the airport showed a low of 27 degrees, rising only slightly as of 8:30 this morning to 30 degrees.

Instead, the readings are a result of technical difficulties. The temperature this morning was actually closer to 60 degrees.

Water levels in the Saline River north of Hays have started tapering off, already returning to near normal north of WaKeeney and falling as much as 3 feet from its high north of Russell.

The rushing Saline River water has been enough to push water levels at Wilson Lake nearly two feet higher, after more than 3 billion gallons swept into the reservoir, which had recently recorded historic lows.