Chasing the Northern Lights

When waking up in the morning, it has become a habit for me to check two APPs on my phone:

The first is the Weather APP, to find out how cold it will be today – as a general rule: the colder the better –

because it not only preserves the snow with all the benefits it brings (more about that another time…), but with colder temperatures there will be in most cases beautiful weather with a clear sky.

The other APP – I actually use two different ones – is somewhat new to me : its an Aurora Forecasting APP.

The manifestation of the planet’s magnet field interacting and in fact protecting us from solar winds, is one of nature’s spectacles most people hope to see at least once in their lifetime and it may feel like a just reward for the long hours of darkness during the winter months for the people who permanently live at these latitudes.

Sundsvall, located still a few hundred kilometers South of the polar circle is experiencing a visit of the Aurora Borealis only occasionally during the winter, but it is still often enough to make it worth the effort to look out for it at clear nights.

Unless you happen to live in the middle of the countryside with an open sky and no light pollution, the seasoned Aurora Borealis hunter is wrapping up warm and ideally armed with a reindeer skin to sit on and with a thermos flask with a warm drink before heading out of town, usually in the middle of the night.

The best sightings are with a new moon and with as little clouds on the sky as possible. Once in place, it remains a matter of some luck (unless you live even further North) that the Northern Lights will appear.

Having then the phone in the pocket (to protect it from the cold temperatures) will not only give you an opportunity to take some amazing images, but the display will in fact further enhance the colours of the display.

Only a few more days left in the North, so fingers crossed that I will be lucky with another sighting…..

Published by The Blue Vet

I am a veterinary surgeon with a German and Norwegian educational background. I have been the founder and for over 20 years I have been the senior veterinarian at the Virginia Water Veterinary Clinic in Surrey, England. When starting this blog I was also the President of FECAVA, the Federation of European Companion Animal Veterinary Associations. In the summer of 2019 I left my clinic to work as an international locum and clinical advisor. I am interested in all aspects of clinical companion animal medicine, in endurance sports and in traveling and meeting people with and without their pets and especially in sharing my knowledge with colleagues in other parts of Europe and the World.

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