Snow, superbloom, lightning: Stunning images of June in California captured by Yosemite photographer

Yosemite photographer Dakota Snider captured this photo of a lightning strike hitting Mono Lake on Monday, June 5, 2023.  (Dakota Snider)

Lightning, snowfall and a stunning capture of a vast superbloom with a snow-covered Sierra mountain range as its backdrop: A Yosemite photographer has captured some eye-catching images of California’s intense June weather and the aftermath of a historically wet winter.

When Dakota Snider wasn’t chasing after the perfect shot, he’s working in his other job as a firefighter and emergency medical technician (EMT) with the Mammoth Lakes Fire Department.  

On Monday, he posted a photo of a lightning strike hitting Mono Lake, with a Y-shaped electric bolt lighting up the sky.

He tweeted it with the caption, "…hitting Mono Lake! Yewwww!"

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Earlier that evening, he shared another remarkable weather-related post-- a video of snow hitting his windshield along Highway 395 in Mono County. 

"Inches of snow (not hail, actual snowflakes falling) on 395 in Mono County on my chase tonight. Two snowplows passed us," he wrote on Twitter.

The video came just days after Snider shared striking photos of brilliantly colored wildflower fields under a sunny sky with a snow covered Eastern Sierra mountain range in the backdrop. His post also included a photo of a full lake with snow appearing to be at its banks.

On June 2, 2023, photographer Dakota Snider shared photos of wildflowers blooming with the snow-covered Eastern Sierra in the backdrop. (Dakota Snider)

"Can’t get enough of spring right now… so lucky to call this place home," Snider wrote in that post.

The juxtaposition of Monday's snowy conditions next to vibrant images of a blooming spring gave illustration to the severe weather the region had been hit with since the historically wet rainy season.

As an observer chronicling the vast array of displays offered by Mother Nature, Snider suggested that he wasn’t surprised by the snow coming down within weeks before summer's arrival. 

"As a long time resident / photographer in the Eastern Sierra, snow in June isn’t uncommon," he explained to KTVU, while acknowledging, "but after such a long winter it seems like this is the season that just won’t quit!"