Aurora Borealis

The who, what, when, where, and why of Aurora Borealis

Backround Information

What is the Cause?

Aurora Borealis is caused when highly charged electrons from solar wind interact with the Earth's atmosphere. The solar winds from the sun reach Earth and then follow the lines of magnetic force.

Where to see them?

Commonly, the lights match up with the Arctic and Antarctic circles, but sometimes will move a little closer towards us when there is a large amount of sunspots.

When to see them?

The Northern Lights peak every 11 years. The last time that was was 2013. They are easiest to view in Winter, specifically at midnight.

Aurora Borealis vs Aurora Australis

The Aurora Borealis and Aurora Australis are the same things, but Aurora Borealis is the Northern Lights and Aurora Australis is the Southern Lights. The location of the two is the only difference.

What causes the color?

The color of the lights change depending on the type of gas particles in the air at that time. If the lights are green, that means that the oxygen is up to 150 miles in altitude. If the lights are red, that means the oxygen is above 150 miles in altitude. If the lights are blue, that means that the nitrogen in the air is up to 60 miles in altitude. If the lights are purple, the nitrogen is above 60 miles in altitude. It could be only one color, or all of them.

Want to see the Lights?

If the Northern Lights sound like something you would like to see, let us know! You can stay at one of many Larson Lodges'. We have locations in Tromso, Norway; Abisko, Sweden; Yellowknife, Canada; and Fairbanks, Alaska, USA. Stay at one of our rustic hotels and see the night sky light up. Every night, we take trips in a train up to the top of a nearby mountain to see the show. Be sure to bring all of your winter gear and have the experience of a lifetime!
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