Finally: Northern lights!

I almost missed a grand show last night: the northern lights were on. I was finishing up some work on the computer around 10 p.m. and as I knew the sky was mostly clear, I decided to check on the northern lights forecast before going to bed. Having been disappointed countless times before, I didn’t expect much, but was pleasantly surprised to see a level 4 forecast, which means almost guaranteed northern lights. I looked outside and saw a clear ribbon of green in the sky, so I put on some warm clothes, grabbed my camera and tripod and was out the door in 10 minutes. I drove down to Grótta, the nearest unlit area I could think of, parked my car and made my way down to the beach. On the way I passed people of various nationalities who were photographing the lights. Somehow I don’t think the ones using hand-held iPhones are going to be very happy with their snapshots, but there was also a line of tripod-mounted cameras with huddled figures snapping away and I hope they all got spectacular shots. Unfortunately, it was quite windy, and although I sheltered the tripod with my body as best I could, most of the shots had some amount of blurriness. I did get some good (although not spectacular) shots, and they do say practice makes perfect…

Here is one of the best, and below that one of the lights when they turned red. By that point I think I must have accidentally nudged the focus ring when I was fiddling with the camera, because not even the wind should have made it that blurry.

Grotta_northern lights_1

Click to enlarge

Grotta_northern_lights_2

Click to enlarge

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