• What kind of clouds you want? We got all kinds! Fluffy, poofy, wispy, from white to dark and brooding. We’ll throw in some blue sky for free! New shipments arriving soon!

  • I tried for a caption about clouds, winds, mountains, but all that came to me was Gary Larson’s crocodile punchline: That was incredible! No fur, claws, horns, antlers or nothin’…just soft and pink.

    Pink cloud bank at sunset over trailing edge of the Sierra Nevada

  • Ambition. This tiny Praying Mantis staked out the hummingbird feeder for several hours, often clinging to the underside, making threatening advances when hummers came to drink. It felt like a puppy barking at a bear, but perhaps nature’s bookie was giving other odds.

  • When a storm breaks late, the clouds hovering over our valley get lit both from below and above by sunset. The color pallette always speaks to me. It’s not the normal pinks and oranges people fill hard drives with, but blues, greys, tinges of salmon.

  • Waxing crescent moon, peeking through the clouds after sunset.

  • When rain or snow comes our way, we often get this strip of cloud running level along the crest. Cold, wet air comes spilling down from the heights and meets the dry warm air of the desert. Often, the elevation matches that of the pass out of sight to the right.

  • Pine Creek, wearing a feather boa. The rain clouds continue to cover the area. It cooled off so much last night that I had to close the bedroom window.

  • It has been raining since midnight. Not hard, but steadily, so that the eaves are always dripping, a rhythm track I haven’t heard for years. Someone just walked by with an umbrella, a first for my time in the eastern Sierra Nevada.

  • We’ve been getting late afternoon thunderstorms for the last week, kind of like south Florida. The cloud cover isn’t unusual in spring, but I have not seen it in summer. I’m not complaining, just observing, because it is cooler and very photogenic.

  • Mt. Tom and Pine Creek Canyon, all dressed up for the rain.

  • We got actual rain yesterday. Not for long, maybe a half hour, but it will make a difference.

  • I saw these Water Striders and wondered out loud what it would be like to be so light and free. The first turned and said, “I’m underwater on my mortgage, my life ain’t so grand.” The second said, “I’ve got trenchfoot.”

    And then I woke up.

  • Though the boat ride on Convict Lake was a week ago, the good time lingers on through photos. Here are some of my neighbors, basking in the good light from the lake, hair blowing in the wind.

  • Dead wood on the shore of Convict Lake.

  • Kara, enjoying the boat ride on Convict Lake. Her nose was working overtime with all the new smells. She found her sea legs pretty quickly and seemed to enjoy the rolling motion that blurred her face.

  • Convict Lake had a startling look near sunset. A heavy chop alternately reflected the brown of the surrounding mountains and the evening sky, and bobbed the boat, creating an unusual motion blur. I don’t normally push the saturation, but the move toward abstraction was irresistible for me.

  • The smoke chased away a bunch of tourists, which opened up some boat reservations on Convict Lake. A neighbor works there, so she shanghaied a bunch of us for a sunset cruise and barbecue. The air was clearer, but you could see the haze as the sun set.

  • The Oak Fire erupted into the headlines on Saturday, burning 15,000 acres southwest of Yosemite National Park. The prevailing westerly winds brought us the smoke before I noticed the news, sending us scurrying for air filters and muting the landscape.

    The Buttermilk Hills and eastern Sierra Nevada, obscured by smoke.

  • I love a big, partially-cloudy sky. Once again, the arc of confrontation, where wet weather from the west meets the hot, dry rising air from the desert.

  • The tail end of the storm passes the mountains. Clearer, calmer, brighter skies can just be glimpsed at the pass.

  • Battleship. That’s what I think of every time I see a cloud like this. The broad base, the enormous turret, and the convoy of dark clouds all support the illusion.

    Huge cumulonimbus cloud, lit by the setting sun.

  • Cloud cave. Clouds here change quickly, varying greatly in form over short distances. Peekaboo views can open, with puzzlingly great lighting. Often, they come and go before I can find the camera, but I managed to catch this one in the act.

    Dark clouds encircle cumulonimbus clouds peeking through.

  • When the skies over the Sierra Nevada are partially cloudy in the late afternoon, the effect on the White Mountains and Volcanic Tablelands can be amazing.

  • Flotilla of fluff over the White Mountains. I don’t have a good explanation for why the clouds in the foreground are so often in shadow. I have to look into that.

  • The remains of the storm. Just a few wisps left where all the rain fell.

    A narrow line of foft grey clouds float over the trailing edge of a mountain range, with pink skies behind.

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