Colorado and New Mexico Trip Part III

In Part II of this writeup, I made it to Taos, New Mexico Thursday night; Friday morning, I headed down to Los Alamos, and arrived right at the end of a parade and fair:

I grabbed some street food and then went to the Los Alamos National Lab's Bradbury Museum and then headed down to Santa Fe, where I got a nice tour backstage of the Santa Fe Opera with Joseph Tolle, and then checked out the town.

After dinner I headed down to Madrid and shot this picture off a dirt road south of there:

That night I went to see local band The Reverend Karol King Kong at the Cowgirl BBQ.

The next morning, I headed over to Santa Fe Mountain Sport, rented a mountain bike and headed out to the Dale Ball trails:

I had a nice early dinner with my old friend Geoff Webb, and then tried to shoot some lightning pictures, but the weather wasn't cooperating:


I had been hoping to get in some storm chasing during the trip, and on Monday the Storm Prediction Center was giving a slight risk to eastern Colorado, so I headed back up that way, with Limon, CO as my chase target. The drive up through eastern New Mexico and Colorado was amazing:


The SPC was right on; the further north I got, the stormier it got:

Unfortunately the tornadoes hit earlier in the day than I thought (Tony Laubach caught two, just to the north of my target area!), but I did see some cool clouds after dinner in Brush, CO:

I shot a time lapse of the roll/shelf cloud approaching:

You just don't see this kind of stuff in the east!

I got back into Denver late Monday night.  The next morning, I went to see the schizophrenic Wildlife Experience ("a unique blend of interactive exhibits, large format film, fine art, natural history and community educational programs") attraction, and then took a quick look around the amazing Red Rocks amphitheater (with the Rush rig set up on stage--unfortunately the Monday night show was sold out or I would have gone) before heading to the airport to head home. It was a great trip, but after driving about 1500 miles, I was certainly happy to get home...

Many more photos here.