Watch an breathtaking sunset thunderstorm light up the Grand Canyon under candy-colored skies

Thunderstorm over the Grand Canyon
(Image credit: Radar Lane)

On average, the Grand Canyon National Park is hit by lightning 25,000 times a year. The strikes reach their peak from July to September, when Monsoonal thunderstorms move through Arizona bringing much needed rain to a parched region. But they also bring lightning, which can be deadly.

One of this year’s Monsoonal storms has been caught on camera in a video just posted on the Grand Canyon National Park’s Facebook page. It shows a thunderstorm that took place as the sun was setting, and the combination of lightning, thunderclouds and sunset produces a stunning light show against a vibrantly colored backdrop of purple and gold skies.

Warning! The following video may not be suitable who have seen the recent horror movie Nope.

According to the Grand Canyon National Park, this lightning storm was at least 40 miles away, making it safe to film on the rim near Yavapai Point. Cameraman Radar Lane was behind the lens.

Lightning strikes at 90,000 miles (144,841 km) per second with voltage up to one billion volts, reaching temperatures five times hotter than the surface of the sun. The thunder that follows results from the air around the lightning expanding at a super-accelerated rate.

Lightning kills about 20 people each year in the United States (we reported on a camper who was killed by lightning outside Yellowstone National Park just last month) and hundreds more are injured. So it’s a good idea to know how to avoid getting struck by lightning while camping and hiking.