We camped in a valley in the Sierra Nevadas, and there was a lighting strike somewhere in the valley every 30 seconds for a two hour period. We pitched the tent where the boulders around us were at least twice the height of the tent.
The key is to pick places with low ground conductivity. They would have been better off next to rock formations rather than the soiled field. The charge wanders along the ground to points, where the field concentrates. In general, the atmospheric charge drives the ground charge movement. The least likely places to be hit are where the ground conductivity is the lowest.
Rocks act like dielectrics that lower the field. Conductive point like objects like trees, people and poles, raise the field. Cracks in the rocks filled with dirt and tree roots are conductive paths.
posted on 07/29/2005 7:14:31 PM PDT
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