Monsoon Light

Monsoon Light

Monsoon light makes for some remarkable skies here in the high desert. The rain is always welcome. That is especially true this year, which has been very dry to this point. Monsoon season seems to have finally arrived, with heavy rain in some parts of Albuquerque two nights ago and an inch of rain at my house last night. Photographer friends here in Albuquerque remember the monsoon skies of 2009. 2016 may be remembered for its rainbows. Albuquerque has a reputation of sorts for its rainbows, especially the double ones. This has been a great year for rainbows!

Two nights ago I photographed a striking, although single, rainbow. I knew it would develop because of the special monsoon light that appeared as the clouds cleared from the west, with heavy clouds to the east. Anyone who has been here for any length of time and has watched the skies at all knows what this looks like.

monsoon light
Goldfinch Lit Against a Dark Monsoon Sky

7:17pm, MDT. Sun breaking through storm clouds to the west lit this little goldfinch and the branches of a neighbor’s tree dead from the prolonged drought. Heavy, dark clouds covered the mountains to the east. This is the set-up for a rainbow here in Albuquerque. The little spots are not dust on the sensor, but light reflecting off very light drizzle falling at the time.

7:19pm, MDT. A very faint rainbow appeared.

By 7:25pm MDT a magnificent, full arc rainbow had completely developed, persisting for some time.

monsoon light
Rainbow and Sunflowers

I chose this particular evening to focus on the interplay of the monsoon light with things I enjoy in my yard. The large sunflowers are almost ripe with seeds for the birds. This image seems to speak to people with a variety of different beliefs about the cycle of life, with the fading sunflowers that will soon provide nourishment for the birds, and the rainbow, a symbol of hope for people of many different beliefs.

Monsoon light – just one more reason I love living in the high desert of New Mexico.

8 Replies to “Monsoon Light”

    1. Hi, Marie-Claude. Thank you. It really was a beautiful evening here.
      Nice to see you here today. Thank you for dropping by!

  1. The cool grey, almost purplish background of clouds make for nice contrast/complement with the warm, strong yellow-orange evening light. Everything looks so fresh and glistening after a downpour.
    Thanks for sharing.

    1. Hi, Barbara. It was a beautiful evening, even for those of us who are accustomed to beautiful evenings. Thank you so much for stopping by, and for leaving a comment.

    1. Hi, Lavinia. Sorry to be so long in getting back to you! I somehow missed this. 🙁
      The light is always what drew me to the Southwest, even when I was a little kid on vacation. Every now and then, we get a special gift in the light, like this particular evening. And it always lifts me if I’m starting to feel mired in my own quicksand. Thank you so much for dropping by and leaving a comment.

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