Tuesday, August 31, 2010
Pic of the Day
Lightning – Fellsmere, Florida: Summertime in Florida means lighting. Rising heat from the day typically forms thunderheads by late evening and rain is usually eminent. I was driving the back roads near Fellsmere, Florida when I notice, in my rear view mirror, a storm approaching from the south. The distant storm seemed violent, clouds rolling forward, sheet lighting flashing, streak lighting arcing from cloud to cloud and bolt lightning blasting to the earth. How could I be so lucky!
I pulled off the road, set the camera on a tripod and watched the storm as it moved toward me. Lightning, lightning everywhere, the sky was ablaze as the clouds were illuminated by the sheet lightning and the streak lightning that electrified the ground.
I began to shoot using exposures that were about five seconds in duration. As I continued to make exposure after exposure in succession the storm moved ever closer and soon the lighting was striking all around me. Not satisfied with the shots I had taken I continued to take photos, being ever mindful that I was in an electrical storm and I was holding onto a metal tripod. I did feel a bit uneasy about the situation. It wasn’t long before I had a shot I liked and it was non-to soon. No sooner had I got the shot lighting stuck a tree less than fifteen hundred feet from were I stood and the bottom dropped out of the sky. I grabbed camera and tripod, ran for the van and jumped in the side door (which was open) and pulled the camera in behind me. Rain fell so hard I could barely see the road in front of me, and the lightning increased tremendously.
Violent rainstorms are common in central Florida and many residents take them with stride. This one got just a little to close for comfort. However, it is such storms that feed the many lakes and marshes that make central Florida a wetland paradise. The home to so many Florida birds that I love to photograph.
Nikon D3, Nikkor 24-85 zoom, Digital Capture, ISO 200