We don't get much rain out here in New Mexico. Average annual rainfall is about 9.5 inches. And when the rains come, they are almost always scattered, falling unpredictably from place to place, like the rain you see in the image below, rather than uniformly across the land. Frequently, the rain doesn't even make it to the ground because the air is so dry (a phenomenon called "virga").
But sometimes the atmosphere sucks the moisture up from the land and builds the clouds . . . oh, the clouds . . . towering clouds that grow and swirl and spread like nothing you've ever seen before!
Last Sunday, September 17, was one of those days. We had scattered clouds all day, but toward evening, the conditions were right for one of those monster clouds.
As we were eating dinner, Linda noticed that the light outside was changing. So I poked my head out the back door and . . . Whoa!
The sun was setting, and the light changed quickly as the cloud exploded in slow motion:
Here's a closer look:
An even closer look shows the power of the moving air:
As the sun fell below the horizon, the lower portion of the cloud progressively lost its color until all was gray:
The cloud show was over in less than 15 minutes. And then . . . the lightning show began!
If you would like to see these images in a larger format, please visit my photography website, Todos Juntos Photography, by clicking here.