"" Writer's Wanderings: Venezuela's Nightly Catatumbo Lightning Storms

Monday, August 17, 2015

Venezuela's Nightly Catatumbo Lightning Storms

Growing up and spending a lot of summers on South Bass Island in Lake Erie I saw my share of spectacular lightning storms. The water allowed for magnification of the lightning and the echo of the sounds of the thunder. Recently I found information on a spot in Venezuela where a spectacular lightning display takes place almost nightly.

The place is the Maracaibo Lake area where the Catatumbo River enters it. The combination of hot days, cool evening winds from the Andes and the moisture put into the air by the day's heat evaporating the water lends to a combination that is perfect for creating thunderstorms. They rage throughout the night and are said to happen around 260 days out of the year.

The storms are not unlike what occur in the midwestern states of the U.S. The fact that they occur with regularity is what makes them so unique. Unfortunately the area where they occur is near  the Colombian border and not a safe place to be due to the drug trafficking that takes place. Still one set of travelers took on the adventure and their trip is told at Slate .com . If you read their story, be sure to read this article from Storm Highway as well that dispels some of the myths that surround this phenomenon.

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