Living along the coast of the Bay of Fundy one gets to see some pretty interesting sights. A friend visited here one time on a bluebird day in July and asked, “Don’t you ever get tired of the view”? He was joking, but many don’t realize that looking out over the water, the view is always changing.
Many times all we see is grey fog which gets darker or lighter depending on the storm. In fact, fog is so common here that we measure it by how many telephones poles ahead one can see! Yarmouth Nova Scotia, it should be noted, is among the foggiest spots on the planet, sharing much of what makes the Grand Banks off Newfoundland the champion – warm, moisture loaded air over the cold water.
Sometimes, though, when a storm approaches from the south and comes rolling up the Bay of Fundy from out on the Gulf of Maine, the clouds thicken quickly and we can watch as the frontal line approaches. This makes for clear viewing of the storm, and if it has lightning in it, we can have quite the show!
Earlier this week, we had such an event and as I watched a storm moving into the Bay, I had enough time to set up my camera and record the view. The image this week is a triple exposure – I set my camera up on a tripod so it wouldn’t move and then opened the shutter three times to record lighting strikes out over the bay, with the wharf at Port Maitland in the foreground. I should note, the storm was still miles away, way out over the gulf, so while this looks impressive and close, the storm was actually still miles away - and I was standing inside our house taking the image out an open doorway. Having been stranded on a mountain ridge once in a storm as the lightning walked down the ridge from above us, I have a healthy respect for the power in these events. The result on this night is that I got three lightning strikes – one cloud to ground as the far left bolt hit the cliffs below Sandford, one cloud to water as the right bolt hit out into the bay, and one cloud to cloud bolt, that looks like a skipping rope to me.
Lightning is an impressive sight, and it has always stirred human reaction as even the ancients gave Zeus and Thor control over the phenomenon. I shared the image this week on Twitter and CBC showed it on their nightly newscast. An interesting natural occurrence that does indeed command our attention. Just make sure to play safe and take care!