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Anyone witnessed The Northern Lights?

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I am fascinated by the Northern Lights and will hopefully be going on a trip next fall to see them. We'll be heading up to Canada on the eastern side, so my questions are:

Have any of you ever gotten a glimpse of them?

If so, where? How close is it to the US border?

Any and all tips and comments welcome.  :thankyou
#1 - October 22, 2017, 08:00 AM
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Sharon, until last year we lived in Michigan's Upper Peninsula. I walked our dog after dark and saw the Northern Lights fairly frequently. I don't really know how that translates into advice, though.
#2 - October 22, 2017, 08:21 AM
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Sharon, until last year we lived in Michigan's Upper Peninsula. I walked our dog after dark and saw the Northern Lights fairly frequently. I don't really know how that translates into advice, though.

Thanks, Katie! It helps a lot actually because I thought we would have to go WAY north to see them. I am hoping to go along the eastern seaboard and visit a few other places along the way. My goal is to see the beautiful fall colors of New England. Then cross into Canada and go to Nova Scotia since they also have dolphins. I've seen a variety of comments online that says Nova Scotia has them, and some that say they don't, but I suppose it's a timing thing more than anything.

I'm thinking if you could see them in Michigan, then Nova Scotia is a possibility.  :clapping
#3 - October 22, 2017, 08:24 AM
« Last Edit: October 22, 2017, 08:30 AM by Schriscoe »
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I live in New Brunswick & have lived further north in Ontario as well. I've  never seen them. Not even when visiting family in Northern BC where commonly seen. But I have heard that you can sometimes see them as far south as NB. My sister (in northern BC) said they are frequently out there but you have to stay up quite late & the weather conditions have to be just right. Of course I've never prioritized it either. Apparently darkness is key (click on Nova Scotia ): http://maps.canadiangeographic.ca/northern-lights-across-canada/
Certainly worth a try. Worst case scenario you get a stunning view of the milky way!

#4 - October 22, 2017, 09:55 AM

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WOW! what a cool site! Thanks for the link, Marla.

Hubby and I are used to being awake through the night since that's when a lot of our route is run, so staying up would be second nature to us. And I like that worst case scenario. Can't loose there, that's for sure.

#5 - October 22, 2017, 10:49 AM
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I saw the northern lights once in a trip in mid-October in northern Alberta. We were further north than Banff, which we’d done some snow camping in (brrr), but we were at least an hour south of Edmonton. It was well after sundown. I was so, sooo excited, and my Canadian friends kept laughing at me because I guess they’re pretty common in the northern Alberta plains.
#6 - October 22, 2017, 01:26 PM
« Last Edit: October 26, 2017, 08:46 PM by HDWestlund »

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I live on the east side Washington state near Spokane. I've seen them from my front yard. They are amazing!
#7 - October 22, 2017, 03:25 PM
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I've seen them on canoe trips in Algonquin Park (in Ontario, about three hours north of Toronto) in the summer.
#8 - October 22, 2017, 04:11 PM
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WOW! So many of you have seen them! I am awestruck. I want to see them SO bad.

Holly, I'll be like you . . .I know I'll be SO excited that I am sure the locals will think I'm a lunatic. But that's okay, I don't care.  :grin3

Barbara, a canoe trip! That sounds like fun!

Verla, your front yard???? Okay, so if I come west, I get to park in your front yard to witness them? Double win!  :grin3

Thank you everyone for so much wonderful info! I told Hubby that I guarantee the BB will be full of intel on the subject. BBer's know about everything!!  :love5
#9 - October 22, 2017, 07:27 PM
« Last Edit: October 22, 2017, 07:29 PM by Schriscoe »
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Sharon, take a look at this on Astronomy Picture of the Day:
https://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap170101.html

If you do a search on the archive page many more aurora photos pop up, including  https://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap170306.html and https://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap170101.html and this stunning one that includes a geyser in Yellowstone https://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap161002.html

APOD is a site I visit every single day.
#10 - October 22, 2017, 07:43 PM
« Last Edit: October 22, 2017, 07:44 PM by AnneB »

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They are supposed to be visible in parts of the US at times, including New England. It's all about the conditions, as stated above.

If you head through NYC at all, let me know. I'll try to come into the city to meet you for lunch or dinner.

And here's another link for you: http://www.swpc.noaa.gov/node/45
#11 - October 22, 2017, 08:53 PM

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 :wow Awesome links! Thanks Anne and Debbie!! These photos make me want to see them more and more!!

If you head through NYC at all, let me know. I'll try to come into the city to meet you for lunch or dinner.
Will do, Debbie! That'll be awesome!! We are hoping to visit NYC so I can meet Jessica in person! So, I will let you know.
#12 - October 22, 2017, 09:05 PM
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I was reading through https://www.theaurorazone.com/about-the-aurora/the-science-of-the-northern-lights/the-best-time-to-see-the-northern-lights and remembered the best lights I've seen were in late August, west of Lake Superior, at about 2:00am. I was way out in the woods, and the sky lit up green, with bits of red and purple. Absolutely stunning.  But it was weirdly cold that night.
#13 - October 23, 2017, 07:27 AM

I've also seen them twice in Michigan, but in the lower peninsula. So it's definitely possible. I love that you're planning a trip with the hope of seeing them--they really are one of the most amazing things I've ever seen.
#14 - October 23, 2017, 03:37 PM
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I've seen them, in Quetico Provincial Park in Canada and in Ely, MN.
#15 - October 24, 2017, 06:29 PM
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Definitely something I want to see. Enjoy your quest! :star2
#16 - October 24, 2017, 07:29 PM
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WOW! So many BBer's have gotten to see them! I'm so jealous!  :grin3

The fact that some of these sightings are pretty far south in Canada, and some in the US gives me hope that the Nova Scotia area will have them as well.  :excited

#17 - October 25, 2017, 01:54 AM
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