Wooooohoooo!!!! 😍 THIS was the part of the trip that I was looking forward to the most. I had no idea where we were heading to but I could not contain my excitement! Due to the extreme weather conditions our first trip out of the city to Kalfatjörn Church was cancelled so we had the chance to go on our second night instead. Again… don’t be suprised by the amount of people there aswell… there was just so many but you can wander off a little bit so that you are out of the way from everyone else. I pretty much ran to get out of the way of the crowds and found myself the perfect patch of fluffy snow close to the beach. So just to let you know to avoid disappointment.., you’ve probably all seen photos of the Northern Lights but you will never see them like that with your eyes! A lot of people get disappointed and I even heard a few people on the trip saying things like “Ooh this is shit!”… NO! No it isn’t! It’s amazing! The human eye is not capable of picking up and recognising these colours as vividly as a camera would. With your eyes you could see misty white bands in the sky in stripes, moving around and “dancing” to begin with. Obviously seeing the Northern Lights are never guaranteed as there is just no way of predicting this natural phenomenon. Once your eyes start to adjust to the low light levels it then makes it a bit easier to see the Northern Lights. I could then start to see patches of emerald green dancing in the distance beyond the hills. I immediately got the Hero 4 out and programmed it on a night time lapse, low light levels with a long shutter speed and the results are out of this world. Far better than what I could have imagined! To capture the fascinating Aurora Borealis, I set the GoPro to the following settings:
Mode: Night Lapse
Shutter – 30 sec
Interval – Continuous
MP – 12MP Wide
Spot Meter – OFF
Protune – ON
White Balance – 3000K
ISO Limit – Min 100 Max 800
Sharpness – High
See the results for yourself below…
There were lots of shooting stars blazing across the sky on this night aswell, I have even managed to catch a shot of one!
If you want to make the most of the experience then I would recommend a few things:
1) Get away from everyone else and find yourself a nice little spot where you can relax and have a good chance of seeing the lights. Try to keep your back to any light pollution that may be visible from the surrounding area.
2) Do not attempt to take photos with your phone – some phones nowadays like the newest iPhones and Samsungs are supposed to be really good at capturing images in low light settings but if you have a DSLR or a GoPro you are better off. If you are using your phones please please please do not use your flash! It won’t work and to be honest it’s actually just so annoying for everyone else!
3) Wrap up warm and wear suitable footwear. A bottle of water and some snacks may also come in handy (or a little bottle of Rum in my case – warms you up from inside 😉). It all depends on how long you can stay out for.
4) Be patient! Your eyes need to adjust to the darkness and once they do you should be in for a treat. Also, like I said, don’t expect to be seeing colours like you would in photos.. It’s not possible for the most part.
5) Remember that there is no guarantee that you will see anything at all. You can get a lot of different apps which supposedly predict when the activity of the Northern Lights is at its highest – do not trust these as many people have said they are a beautiful mystery. Nobody knows and nobody can predict them. The best times to go are the months of September to March. Even if you don’t see them, as long as you get out into the wild away from the City lights you will still be able to see an awesome array of twinkling stars!