PHOENIX (3TV/CBS5) -- Giant, deep-rooted trees were no match for early Friday morning's powerful winds, as the gusts uprooted trees and even cacti across the Valley.
After a pretty quiet Thanksgiving Day, Mother Nature blew in with full fury in the overnight hours, bringing tornado warnings, heavy rain and strong wind gusts to the entire Phoenix area. The north Valley was one of the areas hit the hardest. Our crews both on the ground and in the sky brought us some jaw-dropping images of the wind damage.
Some of the biggest trees that fell were in the area of Seventh Avenue and Union Hills Drive. From our Arizona's Family News Chopper, we saw a huge tree that had been uprooted and fell, crashing through a backyard wall and landing in the middle of the street, blocking multiple lanes of traffic.
Another startling image came to us on our Arizona's Weather Authority Facebook page. Tara Riedel, who lives near 64th Street and Bell Road in north Scottsdale, sent photos of a huge tree with massive roots that had crashed right onto her roof.
Meteorologist Ian Schwartz tweeted out another eye-popping photo from viewer Gina Montion. It showed a massive tree near 32nd Street and Shea Boulevard that had been torn from the ground and landed on the roof.
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Folks in apartment complexes did not escape the wrath of the storm. We found a huge tree had been uprooted in Paradise Valley and came crashing down on an awning in the complex parking lot, crushing the car beneath it. Brandon Beals posted the photos on our Arizona's Weather Authority Facebook page.
Even a majestic Saguaro cactus fell victim to the winds. From the air, we got a birds-eye view of the cactus uprooted and laying across a driveway in the north Valley.
In a Phoenix neighborhood near 30th Street and Cactus Road, Patrick Boland had just spent 3 days adorning his huge, 60-foot pine tree with about 70 strands of lights. That giant tree got uprooted Friday morning, and it pulled up big chunks of Boland's driveway in the process. "We were hoping to be decorated and lit up for Christmas by Sunday night," he said. "I'm a little behind again."
Maggie Monk says it looks like a bomb went off in her backyard, where limbs were twisted off their trees. Some of the large branches ended up in her swimming pool.
Across the street, Larry Chandler spent the afternoon putting up a temporary backyard fence after a big section of his cinder block wall toppled over.
"It was a little surprising. I wasn't use to it," he said. "Shingles? Yes. Trees? Yes. Wall? No. If it had been a wooden fence, possibly. But not a brick fence."
Steven Taylor and his son Brayden worked together cleaning up branches of the lemon tree that was torn apart in their front yard.
"Our house was shaking so bad that it woke my wife and me up," Steven said. "[Our house] shook for probably about five or 10 seconds. And then probably a minute or two later, we got the alert through one of our phones saying that there was a tornado warning."
We are still collecting photos of the wild weather aftermath. If you have some, please share them on our Arizona's Weather Authority Facebook page.