Over the last few years we’ve seen our fair share of storm and lightning photographs, but this shot from Ecuador Airlines pilot Santiago Borja might top them all. Taken from a Boeing 767-300 cockpit at the precise moment of a lightning flash, the image captures a powerful thunderstorm forming above the Pacific Ocean just south of Panama. A difficult shot considering the turbulent weather and near pitch-dark setting.
“I like this photo so much because you can feel the amazing size of the storm and its power,” he tells the Washington Post. “But at the same time it’s wonderful how peacefully you can fly around it in still air without touching it.”
Borja also shared a second thunderstorm photo with Colossal taken in October of last year along the coast of Venezuela. You can see more of his travel and storm photos on Instagram.
Update: Photographer Kevin O’ Mara shares his own aerial thunderstorm photo taken over Alabama in 2013.