Thunderstorms moved out of the Texas panhandle during the evening hours and through the Okarche area around midnight. The storms seemed harmless enough, but were once again producing quite a bit of lightning as I observed their approach just west of town.
After a little bit of rain started, I moved to about five miles southeast of Okarche and had to set up fast as the -now severe- storms were moving in on me. This is where the fun began. Winds started howling out of the northwest and rain was picking up. There was a considerable amount of blowing dust which can be seen in some of the images. Cloud to ground strikes were crashing down on all sides of me and it was very hard to keep mist/rain off of the lens. As a matter of fact, it was hard enough to stand up and keep the tripod from moving. Needless to say, there are a lot of water drops on the images where CG's were smashing down within a couple of hundred yards of me. It was quite an intense experience and had I been parked about 100 yards farther south, I may have had some EXTREMELY close strikes. It was a lot of fun being in "the zone".
EDIT: While putting together images 1-13 of this gallery, I kept an eye on radar as a small cluster of storms formed in western Oklahoma and moved toward El Reno. Despite being small, these storms were tremendous lightning producers - a common theme of late. They were going to be moving just south of Concho hill which provides a nice vantage point of El Reno. So, in a "make hay while the sun shines" moment - I headed back out at 2:30 A.M. and was rewarded with the last couple of images. #14 shows the barrage of cloud to ground lightning pounding El Reno. #15 was shot at the back of the small storm complex as the near full moon comes into view.