Distant lightning from a departing thunderstorm, July 19, 2016. (Kevin Ambrose)

The year 2016 was particularly good for weather photography in the Washington region. We had a lot of storms and significant weather events to serve as subjects. Below is an assortment of my favorite weather photos taken over the past year.

I purposely mixed up the order of the photos to illustrate the contrast of color associated with the seasons. It’s great to live in a city with four distinct seasons.


Sledding at the Capitol after Snowzilla, January 25, 2016. (Kevin Ambrose)

Winter was very slow to arrive, but the season made up for lost time with a blizzard of historic proportions in late January followed by a significant snowstorm in mid-February. Both storms provided great photo opportunities and satisfied our local snow lovers.

Winter quickly waned, however, and spring arrived ahead of schedule with a cherry blossom bloom in March.  The bloom usually occurs in April. The weather for shooting blossoms was good and thousands of photographers were rewarded with beautiful photos of an early bloom.


A small thunderstorm during sunset at Kill Devil Hills, North Carolina, June 12, 2016. (Kevin Ambrose)

The weather in spring turned chilly in April through mid-May, particularly on the weekends, but summer arrived on schedule with very hot and dry weather.  July and August featured several photogenic thunderstorms which gave photographers some good lightning shots and storm chases.

The summer warmth continued into fall which delayed the color change of the local foliage. But when fall color did arrive in late October and early November, the trees around D.C. looked great for photography.


The Korean War Veterans Memorial with heavy snow, February 15, 2016. (Kevin Ambrose)

Looking back at 2016, my only weather-related disappointment was the lack of a December snowstorm.  Every year, I hope to get a photo of snow on the National and/or Capitol Christmas trees. Most years, I’m disappointed but a few years have produced.  Hopefully, we’ll get some December snow in 2017.

Whatever the year 2017 throws our way regarding weather — snow, fog, rainbows, or thunderstorms — I am looking forward to chasing the weather and reporting back with a few photos!  And, yes, I have my fingers crossed for another historic blizzard but I’ll be happy with a good lightning photo or two.  Happy New Year!


Ducks on the Tidal Basin with cherry blossoms in full bloom, March 26, 2016. (Kevin Ambrose)

A close lightning strike, July 19, 2016. (Kevin Ambrose)

The Harvest Moon rises above Washington, D.C., September 17, 2016. (Kevin Ambrose)

The Vietnam Veterans Memorial with heavy snow, February 15, 2016. (Kevin Ambrose)

Lincoln Memorial lightning, July 19, 2016. (Kevin Ambrose)

Kayaking Great Falls during autumn, October 23, 2016. (Kevin Ambrose)

A stormy sunset at the Manassas National Battlefield Park, October 14, 2016. (Kevin Ambrose)

Great Falls frosted with snow, March 4, 2016. (Kevin Ambrose)

Cloud-to-cloud lightning above D.C., August 15, 2016. (Kevin Ambrose)

Autumn sunrise at the Tidal Basin with the Jefferson Memorial, November 13, 2016. (Kevin Ambrose)

The Capitol after Snowzilla, January 25, 2016. (Kevin Ambrose)

Tidal Basin transformations through all four seasons of 2016.  The winter photo is from February 15; the spring photo is from March 29; the summer photo is from August 4; and fall photo is from November 10. (Kevin Ambrose)

The four seasons of 2016 represented in one image using a slice from each season. (Kevin Ambrose)