Storm Level (7Kp)

A couple of nights ago, I was sitting at home trying to mentally prepare for the Whistler Half Marathon. I had done very minimal training (a very bad idea by the way).  I noticed an alert on my Twitter feed:

In 58 minutes the Aurora Borealis should be at ‘STORM’ LEVEL! (It’s On!!) (7 Kp)
2013-05-31 9:49

As I waited for darkness to arrive I was torn between getting an early night or heading down to one of the lakes in the area to try and snap some shots. In the end I decided it would be worth a look and headed down to Lakeside Park at Alta Lake.

Growing green cloud

Growing green cloud

I am glad I did. The lights don’t put on quite the same show as they do further north and for awhile all that was visible was a large yellow-green cloud on the northern horizon. Eventually it grew and started changing shape slowly. After a while the green glow took up almost all of the north sky.


My skills behind the camera definitely need some improvement as my nighttime abilities have their limits. If anyone has feedback or advice on how to shoot better photos of the aurora please feel free to let me know. Basically I just played around with the shutter speed. Varying from 10-40 seconds. I think the best photos were the ones with shutter speeds between 20-30 seconds. I also tried playing around with the ISO sensitivity as well. Trying out settings between 100 and 1600. Since then I have read that the longer the shutter speed the lower the ISO setting needs to be. Hopefully I’ll get another chance to get out there and keep experimenting.

NL4 NL7 NL10

Fiddling around with the pictures in Photoshop was another aspect I am completely new at. I tried to not do too much. What do you think?

NL8 Overblackcomb

I had planned to head down for 45 minutes or so then head home and still be in bed before midnight however watching the lights and playing around with my camera was pretty addictive. I didn’t make it home until after 0130. The half marathon was suitably difficult given my lack of fitness and fatigue but it was well worth it to get some photos.


4 responses to “Storm Level (7Kp)

  1. Looks beautiful, what is the explanation?

  2. amazing pics james!!!

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