IMAGE: Woman in flip-flops walks in hail
Ed Andrieski  /  AP
A woman wearing flip-flops walks through a pile of hail after a storm in downtown Denver on Tuesday afternoon.
updated 5/29/2007 7:25:35 PM ET 2007-05-29T23:25:35

Grape-size hail pummeled the city on Tuesday, blanketing downtown streets, startling drivers and pedestrians, and piling up 4 inches deep at an amusement park.

Motorists scurried under bridges or into garages and pedestrians scrambled for cover to avoid being pelted.

Brazil Redd, 21, was outside when the rain and hail began, her car being towed after a hit-and-run collision.

"It hurt. I probably got bruises. It was huge," she said. "I got soaked."

At Elitch Gardens amusement park, the hail broke lights and toppled small trees, prompting the park to close several hours early, spokeswoman Brooke Gabbert said.

Visitors were led to shelters and then moved out of the park after the storm passed.

"With the severe hail, we have to recheck all the rides. It would've been a while before we would have been able to reopen," Gabbert said.

Marty Thrall plodded through a half-inch of hail in a short-sleeved T-shirt, shorts and sandals.

"I didn't know it was going to be this icy," he said.

Flooding in the Plains
Heavy rain soaked the Plains states from Colorado up to Minnesota Tuesday, causing minor flooding in some places. The National Weather Service issued tornado warnings for Elbert County, 60 miles southeast of Denver, and for Lincoln County in southwestern Nebraska.

Much of southeast Texas was expected to get 1 to 2 inches of rain with some areas getting 3 to 5 inches, said Matt Moreland, a forecaster at the National Weather Service in Houston. Ten inches fell overnight in the town of Hallettsville.

In Oklahoma, more than 1,000 campers trapped in their cars by flash flooding on Sunday were able to leave Turner Falls Park near Davis on Monday. No injuries were reported.

Park officials had opened a building inside the park to allow rain-soaked campers to dry out, and the Red Cross delivered food and supplies, park manager Tom Graham said.

By 8 a.m. Monday, the floodwaters subsided enough so that motorists could cross the low-water road leading to the campgrounds.

“The park is going to be closed for two or three days,” Graham said. “We’ve still got a lot of cleanup to do.”

Flood warnings were issued for parts of Oklahoma and Texas. Severe thunderstorm warnings were issued as far north as Wyoming and South Dakota.

At Guadalupe River State Park in Texas, public access to the river was reopened Monday afternoon with a word of caution.

“We advise all but the most experienced people to stay out of the water,” said park superintendent Mark Abolafia-Rosenzweig.

On Sunday, firefighters rescued more than two dozen people as the Guadalupe spilled over its banks in Central Texas. After taking refuge from the rain under a bridge, 17 people had to be rescued as the river rose, said Mark Reynolds, a public information officer with the Comal County Sheriff’s Office.

The two men missing since Thursday when their vehicles were swept away are presumed dead. Both of their vehicles were found.

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