Thunderstorm Appreciation Thread

There’s a colossal rainstorm running over my house. Several huge thunderbolts have just gone off right in my backyard; I’m tempted to go looking for smoking craters tomorrow morning.

I love thunderstorms. Rain gets me depressed, but thunderstorms somehow make me happy. Maybe it’s the raw fury of nature at its best; maybe it’s the imminent fear of a lightning strike that gets my heart palpatating, and I love the sheer rush of it.

Thought I’d share. Any other Dopers love thunder as much as I do?

And…crap…apologies about the triple post. Computer’s acting funny tonight (probably due to the lightning strikes.)

I’ve always loved thunderstorms. Colorado always had such amazing storms: Multiple lighting strikes in our back yard every hour, usually, when a good storm rolled through. We had a silver maple that never grew above 20 feet because every time it started to do so, it’d get hit again.

Maryland and Florida also generated some whopping big storms, and now I’ve just had a big fat one roll over my place… probably the same one you’re getting, ResIpsaLoquitor.

We just had a thunderstorm here a few weeks ago - the first one I’ve seen in a few years. I grew up in western PA and lived in Florida; thunderstorms were a way of life. In the Pacific NW, they aren’t very common, so when we had one I was really excited. They scare me, totally, but it’s a fun kind of scared. I miss them.

I miss Louisiana thunderstorms. The storms we get here in Texas just don’t measure up. Louisiana thunderstorms are brash, in-your-face storms that don’t take any crap from anybody. You can smell them coming from an hour away and watch the world turn green as the clouds and the vegetation volley the fading light. Then the rain comes down, erasing the world in a gray blur, leaving it to be drawn anew. Anywhere else, a storm is just a storm. On a steaming hot Louisiana afternoon, it’s a rebirth.

We had a great one here the other day! My mom and I turned off all the lights in the house and stood on the back porch.

I went to bed after it had rained for about 12 hours. I wake up five hours later and it’s still thundering. What was that, Noah’s Ark?

I love thunderstorms, the bigger the better. They are so…soul cleansing.

I use to love being at my grandfather’s farm during a thunderstorm. The land was fairly flat and you could watch the storm roll in. I would sit on the porch in a rocker, and the wind would whip around you, blowing stinging rain into your face, the lightning would flash and the thunder would shake the house. It was great!

*uh…didn’t see this was already in progress before I replied to the other thread. Sorry! *

Ya know, I’ve lived or spent a goodly amount of time in much of the US, but thunderstorms aren’t thunderstorms if you aren’t about halfway between the Alberta Clipper and all that warm, moist air heading north from the Gulf of Mexico.

Even Hurricane Andrew, as impressive as that was, wasn’t as…AWESOME as watching thunderheads coming in over flat land, and standing in the yard watching funnel clouds try to form overhad as the fronts collide.

A few years ago, when my cousin graduated from college, there was a huge storm in Winona, MN, that took down way too many mature trees. And while the power was out and and the storm sirens were going off, we were out on the porch watching trees fall over. When the news reports of funnel clouds in our area, my parents get into their car and drive around looking for them.

As much as I like the class and convenience of cities, I will never be able to get over not being able to see what weather is coming my way, for that reason alone.

Funny, when you were posting this, I was probably on my balcony watching one of the thunderstorms which passed through here last night. They are fantastic!


In Taiwan, there’s been a drought, so the science geeks around here have been trying to make artificial rain… and it’s working! It’s thundering up a storm (ahar-har) out there and the gutters are overflowing. Hopefully that’ll solve some problems…

In the meanwhile, I have to put up with my kid sister jumping and shrieking every time the thunder goes off. :mad: :wink:

I love thunderstorms! I turn out the lights, open a window, and usually the door if it’s not blowing in, and just listen to it pour down. There’s a tree in front of my apartment that sways beautifully in the wind when a good one is coming in, with lots of densely packed leaves to chatter in the wind.

I sleep better when one is going on, the thunder just makes me curl up deeper in the sheets, not out of fear, but comfort.

I love rain, thunder, lightning… some of the most calming and exciting weather there is. It’s been pouring for a few days, and last night I went for a walk in the woods during a downpour. It was great!

I would love to be in a thunderstorm in the Midwest sometime.

I have mized feelings. I love the lightning, the drama, the smells.

But the loud cracking of the thunder used to scare me as a child, and I’m still not overly fond of being startled. So I prefer it when the thunder is far away.

They come highly recommended. I live in Chicago a few blocks from Lake Michigan and there’s nothing like being able to hear the storm come rolling across the lake and hit the city. After the movie came out, some friends and I started referring to the spring thunderstorms as “‘High Fidelity’ Rain.”

I’m with you. I spent the first 11 years of my life in rural Illinois and loved to see those anvil tops moving across the sky. Wasn’t much fun running all over the house making sure the windows were closed, then having to open them again because of the occasional tornado warning. Even then I knew we really should have bothered openeing the windows in case of a tornado but there was no arguing with my dad.

I know about those Louisiana storms too having spent my highschool years in the New Orleans suburbs. My parents first rented us a house near the airport for a year, that home had a carport which made for a good place to sit under and watch the storms roll in. All those storms played havoc with my sinuses though.

Yeah, I miss thunderstorms. We hardly ever get them here, and the ones we do get are pretty tame in comparison to the ones I enjoyed on the east coast.

No thunderstorms and no fireflies, but it never gets really hot or really cold. That’s the west coast trade-off.

I do dearly love the Texas storms. Used to chase tornados as well when I lived in Pampa.

Still remember the most destructive thunderstorm in US history when it rolled through Ft. Worth and Dallas on May about 7 or 8 years ago. Turtle Creek rose so fast it flooded and then carried away my friend’s new car while he watched helplessly from a happy hour patio. My aunt’s roof had over 200 large holes from the hail. Ahhh, don’t you love 'em?

The best part is watching them arrive. Along the Gulf Coast, you can watch the thunderheads build during the late afternoon and see the cloud-to-cloud lightning light up cumulonimbus that rise to 50,000’ or 60,000’.

In the Midwest, they’re most impressive when rolling in with a fast-moving cold front. At night, the line of lightning will move from the western horizon to overhead – then disappear soundlessly into the east.

When I was in Congo-Zaire, our house sat 200’ above a plain that was empty for 10 miles to the south. When the rainy season arrived, the thunderstorms would appear behind the hills then roll across the plain before hitting the house. Then the sound of heavy rain against the corrugated roof was deafening.

In the summertime in the Midwest you can also see isolated cells. Once, flying from Chicago to Cincinnati there were isolated cells everywhere. Near Kokomo I encountered a chimney cloud that went from about 500’ above the ground to 30,000’. It was probably 5 miles in diameter and it would have been an easy matter to fly around it. And a dark, heavy rain was pouring out of the base of the cloud.

And what goes with thunderstorms? Hail, sometimes very damaging. Microbursts of wind that can carry the power of a tornado. Very damaging to aircraft, especially when pilots are trying to land just ahead of a storm. The smell of ozone after the lightning has passed.

And lightning strikes. One Easter in Chicago my daughter and I were sitting on the couch when the first storm of the season passed through. She was just 4 and just getting over the initial fear of thunder and lightning.

BOOM! “That lightning strike was near,” I explained. We didn’t know for about 30 minutes, but it had hit the neighbor’s house and knocked out everything electrical – the garage door opener, the heating/cooling controls, of course all of the TV’s and radios. A small finger of electricity had also hit our weather station, but only knocked out the windspeed indicator.

When you live on the West Coast, thunderstorms are rare and mild because there’s little heated ground between the ocean and you to create the tremendous convective activity. A friend from San Jose went back home to Chicago and found herself jumping with every bolt of lightning. She’d forgotten what it was like.

ooh, i looooooove storms… my alter-ego is the goddess of bad weather, and thunderstorms are so pretty, especially at dusk or early in the morning…