Thunder Over the Sangres

thunderstorm over Taos Mountain

Looking east from Taos Valley Overlook

I took this yesterday, the same day I fell down. You could imagine the photographer standing there with a throbbing bloody knee, perhaps. Once more I am in awe of how far and how well one can see when the air’s not fouled by smoke from burning forests. There’s a little fire haze in this shot, actually.

That one just grew and grew, then ambled off southeast. That’s what most thunderstorms are like here. Not the scary dark monsters we had on the Eastern Shore that roared out of nowhere on white humid days and blew down the trees. High desert storms are gigantic evolving convection machines you can sit back and watch. Much of the rain never reaches the ground, but at higher elevations especially, I’ve seen it unload straight down like crazy and leave the ground covered with hail.

When it does rain or even threatens to, we get this amazing refrigerated wind. Rapid evaporation chills the air aloft and it plunges to the ground. (In some circles they call this a “virga bomb.”) A storm came through Taos late this afternoon; it rained like hell in town but we hardly got a drop. What we did get was a ferocious cold dust storm with thunder and lightning, this just after driving by a house for sale one might enjoy if driven to and from there blindfolded.

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John Hamilton Farr lives in Taos, New Mexico, U.S.A. with his classical pianist wife. “Possibly the only place I can get away with this,” he says. As New York Times best-selling author James C. Moore (Bush’s Brain) put it in a review of John’s first book, Buffalo Lights is the work of a man attuned to the world who sees it differently than you and I and writes about it with a language and a vision of life that is impossible to ignore.” John is the author of BUFFALO LIGHTS, TAOS SOUL, ANOTHER DAY IN PARADISE, and THE HELEN CHRONICLES. He has been publishing online since 1996 (Zoo Zone, Farr Site, MacFaust, GRACK!, FarrFeed) and blogs regularly here at JHFARR.COM. See also → John’s Twitter profile, Amazon Author Page, video channel at YouTube, and website photos at SmugMug. To email John, please see CONTACT INFO on About page.  

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