Home > Everglades, Landscapes, Nature > Lucky strike.

Lucky strike.

Approaching Storm, Florida Everglades, 2010

Living near the edge of the Florida Everglades, I often bear witness to Mother Nature’s many spectacles. Beautiful sunsets, captivating wildlife, and during the summer, fierce lightning storms. During our rainy season, you don’t need a wrist watch to know when it is 3:00 p.m., it simply starts to rain. The day might start out bright and sunny, but as afternoon approaches the clouds begin to form, then darken, until they reach a crescendo of booming thunder and crackling lightning.

While most people head inside at this time, I watch the storm from the back windows of my home and jump in the Jeep if the lighting and cloud formations look photographically promising. A few miles into the Everglades there is a raised platform for heightened viewing. Since the land is flat, this platform offers a distant view of the River of Grass, as it is called, and the intense storms that roll over it. I carefully monitor the distance of the lightning so as not to get caught in the storm (don’t try this at home). Then, I follow the dark clouds and lightning strikes as they move across the horizon and adjust my composition accordingly. By calculating the approximate timing between strikes, I opened the shutter (without the use of a lightning trigger) as the bolt entered my composition (I did miss a few).

It bears repeating that this is not a process that should be taken lightly (pun intended). I have found myself way too close for comfort to lightning strikes as the storm changed directions and headed my way. Trust me from experience, you can’t create a very good image…crouched under a picnic table.

Categories: Everglades, Landscapes, Nature
  1. Keith House
    March 29, 2011 at 2:34 pm

    I lived in Central Florida for 15 years and I saw similar scenes so often they became commonplace….I was in the Bull Creek Wildlife Management Area once and had one of these storms blow through…..when I left my “safe” spot to head back to the car I heard crackling behind me – a pine tree maybe 15 feet behind me was ablaze…..Florida lightening is not to be taken lightly…..

  2. April 9, 2011 at 5:58 pm

    beautiful! 🙂

  3. October 14, 2011 at 5:24 pm

    Thank you very much, I greatly appreciate it.

  4. November 28, 2011 at 10:29 pm

    Thank you too.

  5. June 7, 2014 at 3:31 pm

    Hey! I know this is kinda off topic but I was wondering if you knew where I could find a captcha plugin for my comment form?
    I’m using the same blog platform as yours and I’m having trouble finding one?
    Thanks a lot!

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