Thunderstruck on Interstate 8

(please click to view on black and so it fits your screen // canon 5d mark ii, canon 17-40mm f/4 l, 17mm, f/5.6, iso 125, 30 second // buy print)

Last night started off with a beautiful little photoshoot I did with a sweet 90-year old woman and her recently married granddaughter. I arrived at the lady’s house down in Casa Grande about 15 minutes before a large dust storm rolled through town. We braved the dirt, got a few fun images and then headed back inside. I knew once the shoot was over, I would likely head west along Interstate 8 because earlier models had shown storms would propagate that direction into the evening. Sure enough, a massive wall of lightning and rain was moving slow to the west and I figured I could catch up.

South of Gila Bend I ran into a group of stormchasers from Oklahoma and the United Kingdom, a few of which I had already been friends with on Facebook! Was so awesome to run into them and hear how excited they were for every lightning strike, the huge dust storm that hit us on Sentinel Road and just the fun of being out there. The UK folks don’t get lightning like that out there, so this is a stormchasing holiday for them and I wish them the best of luck!

This capture was taken just minutes before all the storms died out for the night. It felt super close, like within 1-2 miles at least. This photograph is cropped to the left side of the image I captured because I wanted it centered, but you can get an idea how close it was considering it’s a 17mm focal length on a full frame.

One of the more exciting, up-close lightning strikes for me this year!

  • John Q

    I miss the lightning images from the old monsoon days, and I’ve NEVER seen one like this…epic. Thanks, Mike.

  • jina

    What the what?!?

  • http://chrisdmrf.wordpress.com Chris Maskell

    One Word………….

    AWESOME

  • http://www.bryansnider.com Bryan Snider

    That looks close….and right on top of you! Anyways nice job!

  • Cap’n Schwartz

    Wow! I clicked on the picture and my lights dimmed…. Great pic !