How Close Would You Go To A Lightning Strike?

One possibly-fortunate-to-not-be-a-pair-of-smoking-but-damp-boots Giz reader decided to answer that question in a rather forthright way. This astonishing photo is the result. I'll let Nik tell the story behind the picture; click on this link for the shot in full.

The story goes that I went for a quick photography session trying to get some snaps of the lightning. Boy was I gonna get it. I drove down under the captain cook bridge and it started to rain so I got in the back of my 4x4s canopy and set my camera up on a tripod.

It started to get really heavy and you could see a clear wall of water going towards me, not to mention wind and lightning. I was thinking "great!" for some reason. So I set my shutter speed to 20s my iso was at 100 and my fstop was at 20. I had no nd filter so I had to do it this way so I could get the lightning and not over expose at 5.30pm.

Well, it started to get hairy. Rain was flying into to canopy and my shoes and jeans got totally wet but I was determined to get the shot, so I sucked it up and stayed. I kept clicking away hoping to get a shot and the lightning was getting closer and louder, then something strange happened…

The hairs on my head neck and arms raised then a split second later…. baaaaang crackle , I ducked down and started to shake like a leaf.

Then I fumbled my camera to check if I got the shot… and yes I did. Wooooo!

I straight away packed up and left, wet, shaking but pumped full of adrenalin. The lightning was only 20 meters to 30 meters away from me.

(Thanks to Nik for sharing!)

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