A late August Monsoon storm passes over Marble Canyon between the Vermilion and Echo Cliffs in Northern Arizona; it lashes at the landscape with angry bolts of lightning. While some lightning strikes are single strands of electricity that connect the cloud with the ground, often the energy of the strike reaches out in multiple paths as it the negative ions at the base of the clouds overcome the insulation of the atmosphere to close the circuit with the positive ions on the ground. These tendrils of lightning reach out and follow the path of least resistant through the well-insulated air until one of them closes the connection.
[In anticipation of this year's Monsoon Season, I am reworking some of my lightning photographs from last season... enjoy!]
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All images © Christopher K. Eaton / Terra Photographica - All Rights Reserved. Please contact for licensing and permission for use.