Prairie Aurora

Prairie Aurora - 2013 © Christopher Martin

The Northern Lights on the weekend were beautiful.  On Friday morning they were active from 10 pm through to 5 am Saturday morning.  Fiery, green ribbons rippled under the stars with faint echoes of blue and purple streaming skyward.

(for a higher resolution version, please click on any picture)

Northern Lights in the city - 2013 © Christopher Martin

When I received an email from Aurora Watch’s alert service, I was in Calgary finishing dinner with my friend Jack.  We headed up to a hill that overlooks downtown to check the sky.  Even with the orange glow in the atmosphere from the city’s lights, we could see shimmering swaths of green.  That whet the appetite and we headed west along the Trans Canada Highway out of the city and into the rolling hills to the west.  A small marsh south of Cochrane being our destination to take in the lights.

Green contoured - 2013 © Christopher Martin

By the time we were at the pond, it was after midnight and the early wisps of color had intensified in color and solidity.  The thick bands stretched west and east, from one horizon to the other. With the Northern Lights reflected in the water, there were some interesting images available.  I also posted another photograph separately called The Phantom Menace which is a favourite of mine from the night.  You can see that image here.

Aurora abstract - 2013 © Christopher Martin

A different broadcast - 2013 © Christopher Martin

The aurora was at its most discrete around 2 am with beautiful details etched into the fabric swimming between land and sky.  The Cree named these colourful displays the Dance of the Spirits.  I really like that.  On this evening, the spirits enjoyed a long spell on their dance floor.

A shimmering veil - 2013 © Christopher Martin

With the east starting to brighten ahead of the coming sunrise, we were a bit restless for another viewpoint so we followed the road west for a little while.  This small industrial plant was overlooking the fields and when we stopped to have a look, the aurora was pulsing in what turned out to be the final flurry of the night.

Aurora over flames - 2013 © Christopher Martin

9 responses

  1. beautiful captures… stunning indeed!!! 🙂

    May 25, 2013 at 6:17 pm

  2. D. Sullivan

    These pictures are very impressive! Beautiful colors – always enjoy!


    May 23, 2013 at 11:11 am

  3. Dianne Fergstad

    There are no words!!

    May 22, 2013 at 7:13 pm

  4. Pingback: Last Night’s Northern Lights | Christopher Martin Photography

  5. Vicki (from Victoria A Photography)

    Wow, absolutely stunning.

    May 21, 2013 at 4:30 am

  6. Val

    Oh wow, Chris! These are just staggeringly beautiful!

    May 20, 2013 at 2:06 pm

  7. These are gorgeous!!!!!! Thanks for sharing …

    May 20, 2013 at 9:42 am

  8. Yowza! One stunning photo after another, Chris. Well done.

    May 20, 2013 at 8:21 am

  9. Absolutely beautiful .

    May 20, 2013 at 8:09 am

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