I arrived in the Alabama Hills on this evening just as a violent monsoon thunderstorm began to clear--it was so violent that it closed the Mt. Whitney trail for 24 hours, chasing hikers off the mountain and closing Whitney Portal Road as Lone Pine Creek swelled with the storm's runoff. As lightning struck (a little more closely than I would have liked) and thunder rumbled, I watched as the sky turned every color I could imagine--and pretty much simultaneously. The very air over Mt. Whitney glowed pink, and the calming clouds ebbed out into soft blues and purples. It was one of the most beautiful things I've ever witnessed.