Lost Lemonade Files: Storm In Big Bend, Some Shots From Day One

As I was traveling around the country last year, I might spend a whole day shooting people or the natural world around me, pick out a shot or three to share, and then just shove the other thousand frames I shot that day onto the external drive, to be dealt with later. Later has a funny way of being, well, later than later.

I’m just now getting around to wading through the worst of that mess, beginning with Big Bend National Park in early June. This was the view as I approached the park, looking across the desert.



I’ve posted this next shot before, the obligatory shot of Gypsy in front of a sign for something cool. I recently went through and gathered all the shots of Gypsy I took over the summer, and I may make a separate album of them.



Big Bend National Park is humongous, and overwhelmingly beautiful, and I had to stop every so often and just take some landscape shots.



I love this shot of my campsite on the desert floor, with Gypsy and Journey and the tent in the foreground, the Chisos mountains in the background, and that great big gorgeous sky of puffy white clouds on blue.



And there was beauty to shoot on a much smaller scale as well. The cacti were all in bloom while I was there.



Late that first afternoon, I watched the sky change dramatically, and this storm rolled over the Chisos. It was mesmerizing, and deceptively quiet and calming to watch.



The deception didn’t last long, however, that storm rolled right at me at a bajillion kph, and I had to run to Gypsy for cover. I watched as the wind picked up from nothing to near-hurricane-force wind in just a few minutes. It was just about that time when I thought I should make a dash to the tent and pull it down flat before the wind could damage it…



…but the Δv of the wind was faster than my brain, and two tent poles snapped before I could make my run.



The storm was brief, with little rain, and it blew out as quickly as it blew in. The near-sunset light on the mountains was breathtaking as it poked out from under the clouds near the horizon.



And then, just to add a cherry on top, Mother Nature graced me with a rainbow for good measure.



A similar storm blew in the next afternoon, and I managed to get the rigged-with-shipping-tape tent down flat in time to avoid more damage, but the third night the storm blew in the opposite direction and stayed off on the horizon. That’s when I shot this, probably my second-favorite shot I’ve ever taken.

There are a lot more Lost Lemonade shots from the past few months to come, and I’ve already seen some overlooked gems in there, so check back often and look for “Lost Lemonade” in the post titles!


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Louis Shackleton is an intimate portraiture artist and wildlife photographer formerly based in Wilmington, NC. After 3 years of traveling the continent in his 2001 VW Passat, he's now settled in Seattle, Washington.

Head on over to the About page to read more about him and his work.

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