I’ve always wanted to see The Northern Lights, and for the past couple of nights they have been visible from the northern parts of the UK. Last night the Boy and I went in search of them.
I thought Northumberland might have been a good place to try (and a closer place!) but there were spectacular views of the event from Tan Hill Inn on Sunday night so the Boy wanted to drive out to Tan Hill in the hopes of seeing them again (the very excited bar girl told us that we’d missed the BBC news crew filming the report I linked to by about 15 minutes!). Sadly we didn’t see any lights, but i did get the chance to wear lots of my nice woolly hand knits and play around with my camera and some long exposure settings.
There were a lot of people around the Inn, but I found the headlight trails in the long exposures quite fun!
We eventually left the inn and drove a little further down the road where it was a bit quieter. I’d read reports that the Lights were sometimes tricky to see with the naked eye but appeared quite well on camera, so I thought I’d try again in an area where we could get a better view of the northern horizon where the Lights were supposed to appear but there was still no luck. I’m assuming the orange lights are just inner city light pollution, but it was quite pretty to see. Most of the time I really couldn’t see what I was photographing in the darkness, it was very much a case of pointing the camera in the general direction of the sky/horizon and see what we end up with!
So we failed in our quest to see the Northern Lights, but it ended up being a pretty decent night for stargazing and I loved the quiet serenity of the dales at midnight. Hard to capture the constellations on camera though, you can barely make out Orion’s Belt!
Apparently the Lights are supposed to be visible for the rest of the week so we night try again. I’m not holding out much hope for tonight though, it’s a horrid, overcast, drizzly kind of day so unless things clear up dramatically there’ll not be much of the sky to see tonight!