#32 See the Aurora Borealis

The Aurora Borealis or Northern Lights are one of the most awe inspiring displays one can see. They are Nature’s own Light Show. They occur during certain times of year during the winter months in locations close to the Northern Pole regions.

What the Northern Lights Should look like.

Thanks to the recession and all three of the Iceland’s major banks following their difficulties in refinancing their short-term debt and a run on deposits in the United Kingdom, Iceland’s economy was in ruin, and their national currency pretty much useless with inflation…..thus this made a trip to Iceland very affordable and extremely cheap. So thus I jumped in with a group of friends who happen to be going to Iceland during superbowl weekend, they were going for leisure, I primarily went to see if I can chase down the Northern Lights.

Iceland Victory Pose

We went in February which is prime time for viewing the Northern Lights. In Iceland the prime time is December through March. However since I was only there for a short weekend, I had to hope for Clear Skies, No Full Moon, and Solar Emissions/Flares from the Sun in order to create the perfect conditions for the Northern lights to appear, and be visible to the naked eye.

As luck would have it, the NASA website was reporting Solar Flares and we had clear skies and No Moon. However the best we saw was what looked like Faint White Clouds in the middle of a pitch black sky. By using a 60 second time lapse with a Hybrid SLR camera we were able to confirm that it was the Northern Lights we were looking at.

Very Weak Northern Lights

We thought that’s all there was to it, and all the brilliant photos we saw on the internet was all time lapse photography that created the brilliant hues of colors. However when we asked around we found out that the Northern Lights were very weak that night and to see the true northern lights you would’ve been blown away, inspired, and be in awe of it, if we didn’t experience that sensation then we didn’t see it.
The trip itself was a great time, and I did a lot in Iceland even though we didn’t truly see the Northern Lights in all it’s glory, So with that said, I am penciling this off my list, however I will still actively chase the Northern Lights and attempt to see it in all it’s full blown glory somewhere else in the world.

Here’s a video of what the Aurora Borealis should look like

The Aurora from Terje Sorgjerd on Vimeo.