All posts by Stephen

My Seven Hour Lightning Orgy- Vernon Texas

Rain rattles against my motel window while a huge lightning bolt delights me outside. – Vernon, TX; May 2018

Hungry to see some good lightning after such  a dry spring, I target the Vernon Texas area for a one day storm chase vacation. After a 4.5 hour drive from Dallas, I check into my reserved motel and feel ready to savor whatever nature brings me. It feels so peaceful and warm inside to have chosen a chase target early in the morning and now as weather develops to the west, I’m  free to dance with God’s elements.

Once checked in at my motel, I joyfully set out to intercept my first storm. This is located out towards Childress. Distant lightning and swirling clouds beckon me onward in the photo above. 

Little did I know this would begin a seven hour orgy of God’s electric glory.

I sit with excitement on SR 281, waiting for my storm to come to me!

A wild wind, rain and small hail storm is now just a motion away. Occasional lightning flickers among the clouds.

At dusk, in between storms, cloud to cloud lightning graces the sky. Captured outside my motel window.

As dusk deepens, more magnificent anvil lightning dances across clouds above. Looking southeast.

After dark, winds kick up in fitful gusts and a new lightning show approaches my location. Both exciting and eerie as rolls of squall cloud illuminate themselves via sheet lightning. Thrill  and awe fill my heart.

This new storm drops an orgy of exquisite cloud to ground bolts dancing right before me. I love the mystical atmosphere and electric excitement!

Orgasmic lightning dances with dramatic wind shattered  storm clouds as the show approaches my location. I love the glow of lightning upon rain wet pavement.

Brilliant lightning bolt reflects itself off the pavement and casts all in its subtle glow. Looking west..

As the light and sound show press overhead and off into the east, individual bolts salute me with  lovely patterns right outside my motel window!

Rain pounding on the window distorts this bolt into jagged edges. However I still enjoy posting this because it still  captures the amazing energy inherent in the lightning.

My first intercept adventure began around 6pm. The lighting continues unabated, even after my body needs me to go to sleep around 1am. My soul is nourished and I give great thanks.



April Wildness

Our storm season has finally begun in earnest this April and has treated me to hours of savoring celestial wildness! The above photo is captured about 10 miles north of Farmersville, TX during a storm intercept after work on April 13th.

This hail was collected in my neighborhood after another lucky Friday storm, April 6th, 2018. Some stones attained 1.25 inches diameter.

Wild boiling thunderheads greet me on April 13 as my work day unfolds. “I must go as soon as possible and intercept this!” I say to myself. The sheer power and wildness of this scene causes my heart to race with the anticipation of the chase. It takes me 1.5 hours to attain my goal and intercept the outer boundary of a hailstorm, 10 to 15 miles north of Farmersville, TX.

These seething, boiling clouds move in various directions, silhouetted against a hailstorm. It’s my first capture north of Farmersville on April 13th.

This photo reveals a partially rain/hail wrapped funnel cloud in Murphy, TX; about five miles from my location. There’s even an inflow tail at its upper right. Captured near my neighborhood after a  frantic “rush hour” chase from work on April 6th. This particular storm moved from the northwest to southeast, a somewhat unusual direction for our area.

The funnel above occurred ahead of the cold front on April 6th. This photo shows low clouds rushing southward just behind the cold front as it pushes through after the first storm, bringing a dramatic temperature drop. Behind these clouds to the right side of this photo is a gathering thunderstorm for a lovely second encounter with Celestial Wildness. This is the storm which produced the large hail posted earlier.

This is the scene which greets me after work on Friday April 6th, looking north. Despite its distance from my location, I could still hear thunder from deep within.  My focus becomes getting through the evening traffic as  quick as possible, and determining the best route to reach it.  The funnel cloud posted above is one of my first rewards from the chase.

On April 13th, after chasing from Dallas to Farmersville, TX, my spirit rejoices as a band of thunderstorms develop immediately along a cold front literally just west of our neighborhood. This photo looks southeast.  My entire evening, from chase and deliverance to neighborhood fireworks feels like a mini storm chase vacation. The freedom and unfettered joy of dancing with celestial wildness fills my heart and spirit.

This is my parting shot before returning home on April 13th. Gazing east, I give a verbal prayer of thanks to God for moving through and dancing within this sheer magnificence, and my opportunity to savor and dance with God.


One of my most Awesome Lightning Captures

I had watched this thunderstorm cell approach slowly from the south with glee and joyful anticipation. All along its approach, it released awesome cloud to sky and earth lightning bolts. As it got closer, I grabbed my camera and went to my favorite viewing area in Richardson. My jaw hung in awe as I celebrated amazing bolts leaping forth. However they were scattered and hard to capture on camera. Finally the piece de resistance fell right into my lens and I was thrilled. The rest is history.  August 2016.

Southern Oklahoma Storm Safari

A wall of rain and thunder rumbles serve as the opening curtain to my Safari success.
One of my peak moments as lightning strikes a sign across the highway from me!
Another peak storm safari reward. I drove a total of 270 miles and savored lots of epic moments. For the first time in my life, a clap of thunder actually shakes my car!

This beautiful shelf cloud dances before me as the storm continues to blossom. The southern end is rotating.

Beautiful storm and sun contrasts as the show begins west of Ardmore
Scud or funnel? A mad dash through lots of stop lights, speed limit 35 or less towns provides this as my view. By the time I arrive it washes out. However a magnificent lightning show awaits me.
By 9:20 pm I must begin the trek back to Dallas, with the next day being a work day. Yet even the south end of my storm brings me magnificence.


Celebrating Celestial Beauty

Between late April and July 2017, many amazing celestial events inspired a deep celebration of awe and wonder of boundless beauty. This included long distance intercepts and neighborhood chases between my front and back door.  Following are some snaps from my celestial celebrations:

Last Saturday I drove 15 miles and intercepted a juicy, wild show. After it faded there, I followed it to Sunnyvale, located southeast  of Dallas and enjoyed three hours of action
Allen, Texas: Whiteout rain and winds to 50 mph. Photo taken with windshield wipers running full blast while parked.
Dramatic clouds hung low as Allen storm rolled in.

Driving up 75/Central Expressway Plano, and hot on the trail,  my adrenaline surges as I head for the prize.
Once in Allen and comfortably parked, awe fills my heart as intense clouds approach from the north
After savoring nearly an hour of elemental wildness in Allen, I drive south, continuing my dance with celestial beauty and follow the show through Garland, Mesquite on onto Sunnyvale.
New thunderheads blossom up ahead of the outflow boundary while storm heart carries forth on the left. Mesquite, Tex
Beautiful distant thunder clouds play with sun as my chase has ended and I ready to return home.
After work one early May evening, this amazing cloud formation triggered adrenaline and passionate desire to go get ’em. Near Sulphur Springs, 50 miles away, success was had
This is my best Sulphur Springs capture as this celestial man breathes lightning. Who does he resemble?
Another Sulphur Springs capture, looking southeast
A groggy but awe inspiring time was had as I savored a 6:30 am lightning show in my neighborhood, late May
New cumulus towers build into departing storm which passed just south of our neighborhood Memorial Day weekend. I charged south to intercept the developing line. Before all was said and done, it was a 250 mile round trip.
Chasing south I met my objective intercepting pulsing lilac lightning, winds and rain blowing sideways, and near zero visibility.  This photo is taken with windshield wipers running full blast. My objective was to punch through to the other side and watch it come through from the beginning. What an amazing intercept!
Finally in Madisonville, Texas I reach the other side, where winds shift from northeast to south, and buoyant warm humid air flows upon me. Pulsing lightning and this seething dramatic sky approaches
After savoring wild rain, wind and lightning in Madisonville, I begin my trek back north to Dallas. An unexpected happy surprise greets me south of Corsicana. A thunderstorm blossoms north of the front just in time for another intercept!

Another east Texas chase brought me this wonderful take home prize. An after- work chase to Canton, Texas; 125 miles trip total.
I am so deeply grateful this show waited till my work shift ended at 7:30 pm. From my work parking lot, I rejoiced to five thunderstorms surrounding me in all directions

Lightning Celebration -Wow!

Captured during storm intercept, McKinney Texas
I celebrate a neighborhod lightning show mid week, thanks to a miraculously broken atmospheric cap.
Lightning leads the way to my McKinney storm intercept last Friday.
Another awesome lightning capture from this week’s early morning light show in my neighborhood
Lightning ripples beautifully along the outer edges of thunderhead
This magnificent lightning bolt was such a pure glee both to witness and capture during my Plano Texas intercept last Friday night
With joy I celebrate God’s magnificent fireworks!
Celebrating God’s passionate creation as lightning explodes across sky during my McKinney intercept.


Soul Nourishing Storm Chase-April 4th, 2017

This is what I went after, a magnificent supercell thunderhead blossoming visibly before me, with me in hot pursuit.  Just getting out and chasing was soul nourishing, but I was committed to going all the way.

Here I am coming closer, marveling at the amazing  contrasts and forms of the thunderheads before me. Captured in McKinney Texas.

Stopped at a light, but getting closer.

Almost there! An occasional vivid bolt leaps between earth and sky off to my northeast (left corner). My goal is to get on the eastern side of the building line straight ahead.  Rain and small hail mix together, slapping my windshield.

Not the best quality, but wanting to post just to show the potent energy of this discharge right overhead. Moved camera just as it leaped.

I’m so happy to have arrived to my goal! Now the supremely soul nourishing time has come for me to simply watch and savor. Looking east.

Magnificent Lightning, February 2017

Captured this magnificent lightning discharge during one of our earliest spring thunderstorms this year.

As balmy humid winds gusted across my post in Richardson, Texas on this late February night, I gazed with awe and joy at occasional bolts dancing across our northern sky.

Magnificent Skies-First Quarter 2017

Captured this magnificent lightning bolt on March 27th before dawn. It danced at the tail end of a potent derecho squall line which blasted through our neighborhood.

Same lightning show as above, March 27th.

Eerie and beautiful sheet lightning graced the sky as well in this display of celestial Magnificence on the 27th.

The evening of March 26th brought me on a storm chase to McKinney, TX and a lovely display of lightning jumping off very intense storm clusters. The highlight of this evening was outrunning a tornado warned storm and large funnel cloud rushing towards me from the west as I raced southward.  What a mystical yet eerie feeling it was to behold the funnel hanging so low above the earth it was lit by city lights.

Magnificent contrasts of sun and storm sky played before me during a quick break on this work day, March 24th. My soul was nourished to witness clips of a thunderstorm containing some heavy rain, vivid flickers, a couple lovely bolts and loud roars.  What a joyful greeting for me after my return from the 11 night cruise. This also served to break a drought, both for me regarding lightning as well as the earth regarding rain.

During the early evening, God did some awesome hand writing across our western sky on March 24th.

From March 8th through March 20th my wife and I savored a cruise across the southern Caribbean. This cruise brought magnificent skies to us, and included a powerful ocean storm on my birthday, March 17th. Photos from the ocean storm will be added in a separate post.  In this photo, full moon rises on balmy humid night over the ocean, casting mystical moods. Shot from our patio view.

Another majestic moon-cloud pattern off our patio.

Moon now higher presents Jupiter, the bright dot below, following suit.

Thunderheads and palm trees, shot in Cartegena, Columbia. What a joy it was to set foot on another continent, South America!

The thunderhead danced and curled majestically overhead.  I heard no thunder, but did enjoy a lovely view. Cartegena, Columbia.

This lightning discharge was captured in Richardson, TX looking north towards Plano on 2/26/17. It’s a single flash, captured with my cell phone.

Another capture of mystical lightning from February 26th.

On February 9th, I had fun with the full moon rising over my head. Me and Moon selfie 🙂

Here moon ascends over the planet of my head…

Celebrated this magnificent sunset in my neighborhood on February 5th.

Savored my first thunderstorm of the year in the predawn hours on January 15th.

Savored my first cloud to ground lightning in a brief but beautiful thunderstorm on January 25th.

Spectacular Lightning-2016 Summer

Deep night thunderstorm, Dallas area.

During  summer 2016, I savored a few lovely thunderstorms and captured truly spectacular lightning bolts in my heart, minds eye and on camera.

Every time I see lightning, the awe-struck, gleeful little child inside of me rejoices with great gusto.

All these were captured after the amazing July 4th and 5th captures listed in earlier lightning posts.

Enjoy 🙂

This spectacular lightning bolt, taken in the morning before work is one of my favorites of the year.

Same lightning show as prior photo, with plenty of lovely thunder and pounding rains to boot.

This bolt tore with spectacular finesse yet majesty through a thunderhead towering over our southern horizon.

Another one of my favorites, captured immediately after my work day ended. Tremendous claps of thunder replied.

Lightning ripples across our southeastern sky on this gentle warm evening.

This anvil to ground lightning beneath overshooting thunderhead top brought me great joy, even though the storm itself began dissipating as it reached our location.