There is nothing that embodies the idea of "terrible beauty" more than an approaching sandstorm. Here is what these awe-inspiring forces of nature look like, right before they consume the ocean or landscape in blinding clouds.

Onslow storm, Western Australia, 9 January 2013

Pictured above. (via The Roosevelts, Levi Cooper and Brett Martin/

Phoenix, Arizona, July 31, 2011

(via Alan Stark/Flickr)

Haboob in the Phoenix Area, July 20, 2012

(via Steve Flowers)

June 27, 2010, Phoenix, Arizona

(via Alan Stark/Flickr)

February 1, 2010, Broken Hill, New South Wales, Australia

(via Tim Gimbert/Flickr)

Mungerannie Hotel, South Australia, 31 January 2010

The name Mungeranie means "big ugly face" in Aboriginal, and it's the only fuel and supplies depot on the Birdsville Track.

(via Sydney Oats/Flickr)

2009 Australian dust storm, 22-24 September 2009

Sydney, 23 September 2009

(via Bite The Dust)

Al-Asad, Iraq, 26 April 2005

The dust storm which originated near the Syrian-Jordanian border swept across Iraq's western desert.

(via U.S. Marine Corps/Gunnery Sgt. Shannon Arledge)

Phoenix, August 19, 1999

(via Mark J. Terrill/Associated Press)

Khartoum, Sudan

(via skyscrapercity)