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One of the Best Things to Do in Alberta – See the Northern Lights!

Have you experienced the magic of the Northern Lights in Alberta? They are magnificent and I was lucky enough to not only see them the other night, I got some amazing photos of them.

The conditions were perfect, the sky was clear, the water was calm and the evening temperatures were cooler, creating the perfect conditions for the sky to light up with bright green lights that danced across the sky, changing shapes. The best part was the reflection of the northern lights in the lake. Wow! It was a magical experience.

Photographers travel from around the world to capture the northern lights in Alberta, but you don’t need to be a professional photographer to get a good shot. Believe it or not, I took these photos with my Iphone 11 without changing any settings. If you do need to play with your settings, try using the night mode and keep you phone as still as possible while you are taking photos.

The aurora borealis or the northern lights as we call them are fascinating and a unique natural phenomenon.

What causes them? The northern lights are a result of geomagnetic activity in the earth’s atmosphere. What does that mean? Energized particles from the sun hit the earth’s upper atmosphere and the earth’s magnetic field redirects them towards the north pole creating lights that streak and dance across the sky.

Although most commonly green, the Northern Lights can be any colour of the rainbow. I have seen brilliant purples and pinks as well.

The key to seeing the Northern Lights is a dark, clear sky and cooler weather. There is no way to guarantee you will see them, but the chances are better if you can align the weather conditions with the right location to view them. There are apps and websites that predict the best time to see them. The University of Alberta Aurora Watch service will even send you alerts for the best chance to see the aurora borealis light show

When is the best time to see the Northern lights? They can be visible all year round, but your chances are best in the cooler, darker months from August to May making seeing the northern lights or the aurora borealis one of the best winter activities in Alberta. The peak months for geomagnetic activity typically align with the autumn and spring equinoxes, making September, October, and March your best chance of catching them.

Where we are located, Northeast of Edmonton, we get to see the northern lights quite often. The best time of night to see them is usually around midnight so it’s best to dress warm and get cozy as you watch the sky come alive or as the Cree Indigenous people in our area believe, watch the spirits dance in the sky.

Imagine laying on the beach gazing up at the sky alive with lights dancing and changing shapes before your very eyes. It’s a once in a lifetime experience and we would love to invite you try your hand in being lucky enough to experience them here at Moose Lake, Alberta.

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