El Niño really started to show itself this week in the form of 5 days of rain. For the last three days, it was raining as I left the house and I managed to find a window of time when the rain stopped to snap a few photographs and get on the road. I had mentioned that I got lucky with the break in the weather, but it wasn’t all luck.
Here is my routine. I would get up at 5:30 and then I’d check the Unisys Satellite Weather Images. I like to look at it in a 12 hour loop so that I can get a picture of where things might be in the next hour or two. There are also a couple of sites that provide animated Doppler Radar maps. I’d focus specifically on the part of the coast where I wanted to shoot and if it seemed like there was a potential opening then I knew it would be worth the risk. If it looks like a massive rain cloud with no potential break or if I would have to drive too far to avoid the rain, well, that’s when I go back to bed and grab another hour or two of shut-eye.
So, yes, I was lucky that the clouds provided an opportunity to shoot, but I sure as heck wouldn’t have been out there if it didn’t look like there was going to be a window. Obviously, the rain doesn’t preclude one from shooting, but if you’re out in the open with nothing to keep you dry, there is typically a little more preparation and weather protection that is involved.
If you have other tips for shooting during a rainstorm, I’d love to hear about them.