Lightning Bolt Pictures

Will and Guy's Collection of Lightning Bolt Pictures

There are various types of cloud-to-ground lightning strikes, on this page we feature the classic bolt.  On other pages we have pictures of fork, bead and ribbon lightning.

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Classic Lightning Bolt Strikes Yacht

Pictures Bolt Lightning

Here are two follow-up pictures showing the damage to the mast caused by the lightning bolt.

Lightning strikes yatch

If a band plays music in a thunderstorm, who is most likely to get hit by lightning? 
The conductor.

Thick Lightning Bolts

Thick Lightning Bolts

Photographer Mitchell Krog says: "In nearly six years of storm photography this single image portrays, more than any other image I've taken, the sheer chaos and power of a lightning storm."


Storm Strikes Lake - Two Main Lightning Bolts Plus Lots of Forks

Lightning is a gigantic electrical spark that results from billions of volts of static electricity.  Each lightning bolt carries a current of 10,000 Amps at 100 million Volts.

Thick Lightning Strikes

Also see a spectacular lightning strike on Burj Dubai Tower

Fascinating Lightning Facts and True Stories Lightning Bolt Hits Building

  1. The chances of being struck by lightning are about one in three million according to the Meteorological Office, UK, higher than your chances of winning the jackpot in the Lotto, which is one in 14 million!
  2. Will and Guy discovered that Mike Bellhouse, from Leeds, reported that one of his wife's colleagues was struck by lightning whilst walking in a park and was fortunate to only walk away a little tingly and shaken.  Apparently less than three weeks later he won over £1 million on the Lotto.
  3. Apparently 85% of people killed by lightning are male.
  4. Another weird story happened to a Bulgarian woman, Martha Maiko. In 1935, an American tourist, Randolph Eastman, during a thunderstorm asked to stay in her house until the storm ended.  A week later they were married, but months later the man was killed by lightning.

    Later Maiko remarried, this time to a Frenchman named Charles Mort. During their trip to Spain her second husband also was struck by lightning. The widow returned to Sofia and started therapy to recover from depression.

    Time passed and she married the doctor from whom she was receiving the treatment. They were married in Berlin, but during a trip to France a lightning bolt hit the car they were driving. The third husband was killed on the spot.

    As far as we are able to ascertain she was not married for a fourth time.

Spectacular Lightning Strike

Lightning Bolt Spectacular


Golfers Often Witness Lightning Bolts

Karin Vickery reported to the BBC of her experience while playing golf in the year 2000 with a friend.

'We had just teed off the 12th hole when the biggest storm I have ever witnessed began. We decided to carry on with our game as we were both at a crucial stage. The clouds became blacker and heavier as the moments wore on. I was walking down to the 13th hole when an enormous piece of fork lightning exploded from the sky. The next thing I remember is waking up in Wrexham Maelor Hospital, north Wales, with 70% burns.'

Karin underwent several operations and said that her life has now resumed a state of normality thanks to the hospital and her friend. 'But I will never forget that fateful day at the 13th hole.' See further stories about unlucky 13.

Will and Guy thank the BBC for help with this article.

Spectacular Lightning Bolt Strikes Volcano

Lightning Bolt Volcano

You can see the volcano at the bottom, note the ash plume during the eruption of this  volcano in Chile.  Incidentally, this pictures also features cloud-to-cloud lightning.


Animals Struck by Lightning Bolts

On 19th August 2004 a lightning strike killed 31 cows sheltering under a tree in Jutland in rural southwest Denmark seemingly setting a gruesome world record.

'When I went out to the barn to milk the remaining cows the tears came,' said farmer, Kurt Nielsen. 'It is a really terrible thing.'

The Danish insurers association said it was the largest number of reported deaths of farm animals from a single bolt of lightning.

The Insurers obviously had not known about the sheep in the USA. On September 1st, 1939, lightning hit and killed 835 sheep that had been bedded down for the night on the top of Pine Canyon in the Raft River Mountains of Box Elder County in northwest Utah.

Rain from a passing thunderstorm wet the ground and sheep, causing the lightning's electrical discharge to move completely through the herd of female sheep and lambs. The next morning, fifteen sheep [out of 850] were found alive but in a dazed condition.

The sheepherder was knocked temporarily unconscious, but escaped death because he was in a tent. However, burned spots on his canvas tent revealed that he probably missed the fate of the sheep by only the smallest of margins.

Lightning Bolt Strikes Down Chinese Debtor


A Chinese man called Mr Xu, swore to God that he didn't owe about $100 to his neighbour Mr Huang.  In the time it has taken you to read this a lightning bolt struck down Mr Xu.  Mr Huang remembered the debt well, Xu borrowed the money for a friend's marriage gift.

In desperation Mr Huang said that if Xu dared to swear to god that he did not owe the money, then he would waive the dept.  Xu foolishly took up the challenge, and made the oath in front of a crowd of neighbours in Fuqing city, China.  Less than a minute after Xu made his oath, he was struck down by lightning.

Xu was quickly taken to hospital where doctors confirmed he had indeed been injured by lightning.  While he is expected to make a full recovery, it is hoped that Xu will settle his debt honourably.

Massive Lightning Bolt Picture Captured on Film

Massive Lightning Bolt

Pictures of lightning bolts as wide as this are quite rare.

Lightning Strikes Twice

The reason a lightning bolt doesn't strike twice in the same place is that the same place isn't there the second time. Willie Tyler 

Another Picture of a Lightning Bolt - Eiffel Tower in Paris, France

Lightning bolt strikes the Eiffel Tower Paris FranceLightning bolt strikes the Eiffel Tower Paris France


Newspaper Headline from the Newport Argus

Man Struck By Lightning Bolt: Faces Battery Charge
[He probably IS the battery charge!]

Huge Lightning Bolt: Picture Kindly Sent in by Andrew

Lightning in Australia

Lightning bolt pictures from Australia

Grease Lightning?

Lightning in Athens

A flash of lightning illuminates the sky over the 2,500-year-old Ancient Parthenon temple, at the Acropolis hill during heavy rainfall in Athens, Greece.

Lightning Bolts

Lightning Bolts

Please send Will and Guy your best pictures of lightning bolts.

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