Some Saskatchewan cattle ranchers got a scare Sunday when they encountered a tornado while coming home on the highway.

It happened while Perry Windjack and several members of his family were taking their empty cattle liner home after fueling up.

Windjack said they saw an ominous-looking rotating cloud about three kilometres away that appeared to form a tail that dropped toward the ground.

"It looked like it was heading east," he said. "We just wanted to get the heck out of there."

The tail pulled back up quickly and the family continued on their way.

Windjack said he's just glad everybody got home safely.

"Basically an empty cattle liner is just like a big old kite and we wouldn't have had much of a chance, had it developed into something," he said. "I think we could have been in some trouble."

Environment Canada told CBC News it was indeed a tornado the Windjacks saw, adding it touched down for a total of about five minutes.

Windjack's son Brodie videoed the swirling cloud for several minutes.

"It really turned into a funnel cloud and the tip started to drop down," Brodie Windjack said. "So there was a little bit of terror, I guess you could say, with all the tornadoes down in Oklahoma."  

The Windjacks' ranch is about 15 kilometres southeast of Maple Creek.

Heavy rain and hail came with the storm and some parts of Maple Creek were briefly flooded.


Brodie Windjack shot this video of a tornado from his family's truck as they hustled to get home Sunday. (Brodie Windjack/YouTube)