Take a look at the comment/s for my previous post for an update on my visit so far to Iceland. Big news, too – I walked down to the local ‘Home Depot’ type place using directions from the hotel staff – in the dark – and still found my way back in time for the Northern Lights pickup! Scary. The other thing I forgot to mention is that the Lights were too faint for my camera. Even some folks in the group with fancy gear and tripods and long exposures were not getting much. We were far away from the light pollution, so that was not a problem.
My advice to anyone who wants to try seeing the Lights and have a better shot is to stay somewhere away from the city where they call you when the lights show up, even if that is the really wee hours (our tour ran from about 9pm until shortly after midnight). Very often, the best displays are more likely at 2-3-4 in the morning. There is a place in Finland, one of several similar Arctic region glamping places, where the rooms are individual climate-controlled ‘igloos’ so you can lie on your bed and have a cozy view of the heavens around the clock.
It’s a shame the Lights have been faint, but at least you got to see them! It was too early/late in the year when I visited Reykjavik (I actually flew to Iceland on Sept 11th 2001 which was…interesting). I’m very jealous! 🙂
Well, there are Northern Lights every year, actually all year; they just aren’t visible when the sun’s out, so there will be more opportunities for you, even if you end up waiting until the next 11year cycle of sun activity to roll around. I didn’t want to tempt fate like that.