This year, the Royal Meteorological Society and weather forecaster AccuWeather have received over 7,700 entries for their Weather Photographer of the Year competition. From rivers to clouds to thunderstorms, all of the images show the beautiful impact that weather leaves on our planet and the judges have had a hard time choosing the winners. But they had to.
Photographer Rudolf Sulgan took home the grand prize for his photograph of people making their way across the Brooklyn Bridge in the middle of a blizzard.
"The weather affects all of our lives and this picture captures that perfectly," Liz Bentley, Chief Executive of the Royal Meteorological Society (RMetS) and panel judge, said in a statement. "Brooklyn Bridge provides an iconic backdrop, but it is the combined effect of snow, wind and freezing temperatures on the people trying to cross the bridge that tells the whole story—it sends a shiver down my spine."
But the other winners and finalists also deserve all the attention they can get, so continue scrolling and check them out!
Public's Winner: 1st Place 'Baikal Treasure' By Alexey Trofimov
"Lake Baikal in Russia is a unique natural site. Its geographical location creates unique weather conditions. Baikal ice is a special magic. For several months, Baikal wears a mantle, interspersed with precious stones."
The public also had a say in the competition. With over 11,000 votes, Alexey Trofimov's image of an icy Lake Baikal received the Public Favorite title. Trofimov took the photo during an expedition to the site. He instantly got attracted to the ice hummocks covered in snow and made the best of the light that the sun gave, refracting in blocks of ice.
Melissa Gerbaldi, Communications Manager at Royal Meteorological Society, told Bored Panda that the public vote and the society's weekly-featured photos on social media allowed people to see the world without having to leave their homes.
Weather Photographer Of The Year 2020: 2nd Place 'Tea Hills' By Vu Trung Huan
"The competition is in its 5th year and it has been steadily growing with each one," Gerbaldi said. "We have had a record number of entries, photographers and public votes. This year was a bit different in that due to Covid restrictions and some parts of the world in lockdown, we opened the competition up to feature entries from people's archives and we saw people capturing some great images through their windows and from their gardens, etc."
Young Weather Photographer Of The Year 2020: Runner Up 'Surf's Up' By Emma Rose Karsten
"This photo was taken in June 22,2020 from the parking lot of my high school - Lafayette High School in Wildwood MO (a suburb of St. Louis). For a split second I thought it was a huge wall of water! Shortly after this cloud appeared it rained, but not a significant amount. It was awesome. Literally."
According to Jesse Ferrell, AccuWeather expert meteorologist and Social Media Manager, this year's entries were made even more special due to the ongoing challenges presented by COVID-19, but "the passion spent on this effort provides some respite from that storm and a reminder of the beauty that weather surrounds us with."
Finalist 'Before A Storm' By Mikhail Shcheglov
"A few seconds before the hail. Iceland, Dyrholaey."
Finalist 'Mammatus Outbreak' By Borisss1982
"This was by far the most spectacular mammatus display I've ever seen in my entire life. After an exciting chase I stopped next to Leipzig (Saxony) to shoot some lightnings on a backside of a thunderstorm. After the sun went down low-hanging mammatus clouds began to shines red and blue. I was just speechless, as I only saw such displays on photos from USA and was not expected to see it in Germany. As a bonus a small lightning found a way to the photo. Simply EPIC!"
Finalist 'Dam Wet' By Andrew Mccaren
"Water cascades down the dam wall of Wet Sleddale reservoir near Shap in Cumbria after a period of very heavy rain. "
Weather Photographer Of The Year 2020: 3rd Place 'Monster' By Maja Kraljik
"This monster shelf cloud was perhaps the most beautiful structure and size over my area. I was waiting for 2 hours to come and then he made a real mess. It was in the morning in Umag NW Istria,Croatia Sept.24th,2017."
Finalist 'Frosty Bison' By Lhedien
"We were in the snow coach just after sunrise on a single digit morning in Yellowstone when this ole boy/girl came ambling around a corner. We hopped out, grabbed some photos and got back in respecting the 25 yard distance rule."
Finalist 'El Chaltén' By Francisco Javier Negroni Rodriguez.
Finalist 'Dream' By Sabrina Garofoli
"During the autumn season, in the very early hours of the morning, thanks to some particular climatic conditions it is possible to witness the formation of the 'river of clouds' in this valley. With the high pressure and the absence of wind, thick layers of fog thicken due to the humidification of the air mass present near the ground and flow along the Adda river, thus giving rise to a muffled landscape. In this period (October-November) the sun rises just behind a dense group of trees: therefore, if the sky is clear, for a few minutes it is possible to observe the formation of these intense rays of light. The photo is taken from a sanctuary, located on a hill overlooking the whole valley."
Finalist 'Halo' By Mikhail Kapychka
"Lunar Halo, Mogilev, Belarus"
Finalist 'Sa Foradada Storm' By Marc Marco Ripoll
"It was a big storm during that night. I live in Valldemossa, in a small town from Mallorca, and I have this location close from where I live. When I saw the lightnings I took my car and I drive to that place to catch the storm. This rock is very famous in Mallorca, is called Sa Foradada (it means The Hole). Many people goes there to see the sunset, I went there to see the storm."
Finalist 'Trees & Fog' By Preston Stoll
"A fast moving fog appeared behind these trees for just a moment and created this minimalist winter scene"
Public's Winner: 3rd Place 'Under The Rainbow' By Joann Randles
"I have been capturing the semi-feral ponies of the Gower for nearly a year, spending many hours observing them and the changes to their environment. Part of following their day to day lives means photographing them in all weather conditions. On this day I remember seeing the rainbow forming after a hailstorm, so I swiftly left my car as the hail passed, running down the common whilst trying to quickly plan my shot and hoping the pony wouldn't move."
Finalist 'Pinnacles Of Light' By Richardi Fox
"I stopped off at Mangersta sea stacks one evening after a day out on Lewis. It was pretty windy on the cliff tops, making long exposures quite challenging. All of a sudden a few rain showers passed over as the late evening light broke though, providing an amazing set of rainbows!"
Public's Winner: 2nd Place 'Predawn Thunderstorm Over El Paso, Texas' By Lori Grace Bailey
"A few seconds before the hail. Iceland, Dyrholaey."
Finalist 'A Thirsty Earth' By Abdul Momin
Finalist 'Final Stand' By Tina Wright
"This historic Arizona dust storm raged across the state for over 200 miles in 2018, reaching its maximum height and density just in time to be illuminated by a stunning sunset."
Finalist 'Lavaredo's Gloria' By Alex Wides
"A 360 degrees panorama to the Tre Cime of Lavaredo illuminated by the Moon that reflects a Spectrum of Brocken behind me; on the cross of Mount Paterno (2,746 mt) the Ursa Major on highest peak, the headlights of the climbers to illuminate their ascent to the summit."
Finalist 'The Red Terror'
"May 7, 2016: My first day of my first major plains chase. Late afternoon found me in far northeastern Colorado, where I was in for a treat: a photogenic tornado touched down in a nearby field and, after it nearly ran my friends and I over and ate a house, it continued into a field and looked just incredible before it died."
Finalist 'Steel Star' By Yurly
"Skyscraper shrouded in morning fog"
Finalist 'Cell With Rainbow' By Šime Barešić
"A supercell that stretches over Vrana Lake ... Feel like a tornado in front of you! Spectacle!!"
Weather Photographer Of The Year 2020: 1st Place 'Blizzard' By Rudolf Sulgan
"Walking across the Brooklyn Bridge in a blizzard."
Finalist 'Just Walking In The Rain' By Adrian Campfield
"Waterlloo Station in London with the rain pouring down with a lone traveller with an umbrella walking in it"
Young Weather Photographer Of The Year 2020: 1st Place 'Frozen Life' By Kolesnik Stephanie Sergeevna
"Leaf stuck in the ice. Figurally, this is print of summer on winter"
Finalist 'Winter Sunset' By Ivicabrlic
"The photo was taken in January, 2017 in Croatia. The photo shows winter landscape before the sun goes down."
Finalist 'Small Tornado' By Hadi Dehghanpour
"A small tornado entered the tents of a number of villagers and lifted them into the sky."
Finalist 'Ridgeline Optics' By Richard Fox
"A panoramic shot from Meall Nan Tarmachan in fog with a fog bow and Broken Spectre. Taken on January 22, 2020"