Aurora season coming to an end

Being able to see auroras in Oulu during mid-winter depends basically on two things, clear skies and activity from the sun. In April however, there is one more challenge: it needs to be dark as well! To see Northern lights, the sun needs to be around 10° below the horizon. Today’s sunset was at 8.38pm and it took two more hours for the sky to be dark enough.

At the moment we get one additional hour of daylight every nine days (7min/day) and bright nights are not far away. To understand how quick the season will end, look at the dates and how long will be dark enough:    April 12: 5,5 hrs    April 26: 2,5 hrs    April 29: 1,3 hrs
April 30: not dark enough anymore

Copyright: Thomas Kast

First aurora of the season at Nallikari, Oulu, in August 2012

Going on the aurora hunt on weekdays starts to be challenging due to the day job. So I’m waiting for the few weekends ahead.

It really is kind of bittersweet now. While I’m looking forward to the summer and months of nonstop daylight, I’m also a bit melancholic because Lady Aurora may be hiding her colorful face from me until next autumn.

Copyright:Thomas Kast

Midnight sun at Nallikari, Oulu, June 2012

Of course, this time brings a lot of advantages with it. I’ll be able to sleep a lot more and have time to be with my family. Also I won’t be checking the internet for aurora alerts (which I do almost every night since August…). Last but not least, I’ll be taking photos of the midnight sun and I won’t have to wear my winter stuff!

Ok, that’s it for now. I really need to check if there are some Northern lights outside!

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