From placid to turbulent, from light to night, Mike Olbinski’s timelapse film of sky scenes in the western Plains and Mountain West called “The Chase” is a marvel.
Released today, it features mystical views of fair weather clouds and menacing storms, sped up so you see them form, sweep through the skies and decay. Lightning bolts frequently streak through scenes, illuminating the towering thunderheads, swirling supercells, and cascading sheets of rain.
The footage, culled from over 45,000 frames of film, was collected over 14 days of storm chasing in 10 states (New Mexico, Texas, Kansas, Oklahoma, Colorado, Nebraska, South Dakota, Wyoming, Montana and North Dakota) this past spring, Olbinski said on his blog.
Olbinski, who hails from Arizona, drove over 12,000 miles to capture the rich diversity of cloud structures, weather phenomena and lighting.
“We saw four tornadoes …, countless supercells, gorgeous shelf clouds, stunning mammatus and some awesome lightning shows,” Olbinski said.
The film becomes more and more dramatic over its 5-minute course, some of the best material towards the end. Stay with it, and you will be glad.
Here are several still frames, in sequence, from each minute of the video:
More from Mike Olbinksi: