Visiting and Photographing the Northern Lights
The easiest place to photograph the Aurora is in Alaska. Just outside the city of Fairbanks, there are a number of excellent locations with open fields, lakes, rivers, and trees that make for good scenes with the aurora above. Further north from Fairbanks is the Brooks Range with beautiful mountains to complete the scene.
The colorful display in the sky from the Aurora Borealis, also known as the Northern Lights, is something everyone should try to experience at least once. There are scientific reasons for why it occurs relating to charged particles, plasma, electrons, etc., but I really don’t try to understand it.
In addition to clear skies, all those scientific factors have to be just right for the Aurora to appear. There are no guarantees and it might happen only one out of five nights. When it happens, there is nothing else like it. It can be landscape photography at its best.
The Northern Lights: What Causes Them and How They Are Seen
Known as the Aurora Borealis, the Northern Lights are a natural phenomenon that can be seen in the sky at night. They are most often green, but they can also be red, blue, purple, or white. The more powerful this natural light is, the more an object will appear to move. This is how it looks to us on Earth.
This light is caused by charged particles from the sun interacting with gases in our atmosphere. It can be seen all around the world if you know where to look for it. Here are some more details on how you can see this beautiful sight for yourself.
What Causes The Northern Lights?
The Northern Light is a natural phenomenon that's caused by charged particles from the sun interacting with gases in our atmosphere. The sun's particles are called ions. As these ions reach Earth, they react to gas molecules in our atmosphere.
Usually, this reaction produces an orange glow. However, when the sun has a solar storm where it sends out more ions than usual, the reaction causes our planet's magnetic field to bend the light in the sky to green and other colors.
The Northern Lights also known as Aurora Borealis are typically seen at night and can be seen all around the world if you know where to look for them.
It can appear with red color, blue color, purple color, or white depending on how strong this natural light is and how powerful an object appears to move due to its effects on Earth.
How They Are Seen?
The Northern Lights are seen best in the Arctic and Antarctic regions. But if you happen to be in North America, Europe, or Asia, you can see them at night.
You'll need to know where to look for them—and that's not as easy as it sounds. The lights are something that happens naturally and can't be predicted, so it's impossible to say when they will appear. However, there are some methods you can use to find them.
One of these methods is by checking the Aurora Borealis forecast on Clear Dark Sky's website. This site offers a map so you can figure out exactly where to go to see the lights.
When Is The Best Time To See Them?
In some parts of the world, you can see this phenomenon from as early as September. In those regions, you can often see it all year round, but it is more common in the months of March to August. For locations in North America and Europe, the best viewing time is usually around April or September.
The Northern Lights are most often visible at night. The best times to see them are between 11 pm and 3 am during periods of low light pollution.
Where Do You See Them?
The Northern Lights are most commonly seen in the Arctic Circle. This is not a fixed area, but rather a large circle around the North Pole where it's possible to see them.
In the summer, the Aurora Borealis can be seen from almost anywhere in Alaska and northern Canada. In winter, it's usually only visible from a few places in Alaska, like Fairbanks and Whitehorse.
The best time to see them is between September and April because there isn't as much sunlight for your eyes to process at night. However, you can still see them during this time if they're bright enough. You may need to go north of the Arctic Circle though!
You might be thinking "well I don't live in one of these areas." Don't worry! You can still visit these places or even just plan an outdoor vacation here for when the lights are visible. There are many tours that you can take for this purpose.
The Northern Lights are a natural phenomenon that can be seen in the sky when charged particles from the sun interact with the Earth's magnetic field. The best time to see them is in the winter when you are in a place that is far from light pollution, in any direction.
My Personal Invitation To You
I personally invite you to begin your journey as a fine art collector. I will work with you every step of the way from the selection of a style and size of one of my Northern Lights National Park landscape photographs to the tracking and delivery of your print.
The end result will be photographic artwork that will add beauty to your home or office and become a cherished possession.
If you have any questions about the process, see my Q and A page or drop me a note on my Contact page.
Fine Art Print and Wall Art Options
My Northern Lights Landscape photographs are offered in the following styles:
- Lumachrome® HD Trulife® Acrylic Prints
- Exhibit Mounted Metal Prints
- Fuji Crystal Archive Paper Prints
Please see my Print Options page for complete details on these museum-quality prints. For illustrations in different rooms, please see my How To Choose page.
Need something different? Please contact me with the details of your request.
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