Closest bolt ever on video?

Mike Hollingshead

I've been meaning to post this clip as it's as classic as they come. A
friend of mine shot it the same night of the huge central NE tornadic sup,
July 12, 2004. This was shot north of Omaha Nebraska. Talk about being in
the right place, at the right time, and pointing the camera in just the
right direction. There is a brief bit of cussing(one word, starts with a s)
for those that would be offended. THIS is why you shoot from inside your
car. Had he been standing outside who knows what would of been. I do not
think that is a dog yelping but the noise his daughter makes right after it.
The bolt is probably around 10 feet away and dead center of the shot. 1.18
meg file and only 6 seconds long...but it's worth it. My editing software
wasn't letting me open the mpeg he sent so I had to leave it as is.

For those interested I put it at the top of this page as a save as link...


If nothing else it's pretty funny.

Man! And I thought the strike I caught this year that was about 250 feet away was close. :lol:

Geese! One very lucky photographer. 8)
That clip has the best quality sound track of a close lightning strike that I know of. No saturation or distortion on either audio or video. You can also see the bead-out of the bolt.

Some other classic close strikes at less than 50ft where the bolt is caught in frame:

From Australia, by John Stevens:

From Chicago, by Hernan Cortes:

There are a couple of others but I couldn't find them online. I remember one by a hiker who got a shot similar to Hernan's while standing out on open rock, he was unhurt.
A year or so ago...

About a year or so ago, I seem to remember seeing a clip where some one actually captured a bolt hitting their car hood as they were traveling down the hiway. I can't remember who it was though. Sorry.

has anybody ever read the book "stormchaser: in pursuit of untamed skies" by warren faidley? if not i reccomend it to all of us chasers out there. anyways in it he has a pic he got off his video camera of a renegade bolt of lightning from one monster discharge that was only about 10 feet away from his car. the picture is on pg 50 for those of you who own or intend to look at the book. scary stuff id say...
Can't believe I forgot to mention Terry Pallister's site:

Terry is a chaser from New Orleans that shoots primarily lightning. He has at least 10 extremely close strikes on video, with the bolts in frame, with 3CCD digital video cameras. Screen grabs are on his site.
WOW! When the bolt disappears you can actually see what appears to be sparks.

You know you are close when you see sparks raining down after the bolt dissapears. During the big Memorial Day weekend outbreak I was driving through Indiana and saw many, many bolts hit close by that left sparks in the air.
My goodness !

And what about the pictures of that supercell ? nasty :shock: