Skies over The Ranch captured by Z 9 / Z14-24f2.8, Z70-200f2.8 w/Z1.4x & Z24-120

We received a lot of free water last week from the summer thunderstorms that rolled through. On the fourth day, the energy in the clouds let loose producing a hail storm of nickel-sized ice rocks for about ten minutes. With that quick expenditure of energy, the storm broke up and then tried to reorganize as it floated east but it was too late in the day. That was OK as it put on an aerial show for the next twelve hours all around The Ranch. The lightning though fifteen to twenty miles away to the east was spectacular and that’s what got me out to look overhead. The sun as it squeezes over The Bitterroots produces some gorgeous sunsets but not all are a photograph. On this evening the pastels were drop-dead dreamy so I ran out with the Z 9 / Z14-24 and pointed up to make the simple click. Then as the color faded the moon peaked out, so I switched to the Z70-200f2.8 with the Z1.4x attached and made another click. With the slow movement of the storm and with the humidity so high, my thoughts turned to the morning sunrise and the possibilities.

At 05:11 I was out with the Z 9 / Z24-120 and man, the heavens put on a whole new show that was glorious! I’m so glad we have no neighbors who can see what I do as I ran up the slope beside the ravine in just sweat pants and flaps racing the bursting color. The air was still on the ground but still moving overhead changing the light and color story with every step I took racing uphill. I didn’t need any coffee, I was already pumped up enough as the heavens exploded as light streamed around lighting up the snow-covered peaks to the west and the Sapphires to the east. Wow! By 06:00 the skies were nearly bald, the clouds continuing their journey east. What a treasure to witness! There are times, you gotta point up!

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