Date: 17th October 2011
Place: Tromsø, Norway
We had spent 3 nights in Tromsø, and that night was our final night there. The previous 3 nights had been wet and cloudy. We were hoping our final night in this northern city is as fruitful as we hoped for when we arrived here.
As promised, our guide arrived at our hotel just after 7pm. He later had to pick other passengers for the night – a family from India, a couple from Japan, a Kiwi girl, and a few other Europeans. Altogether there were 15 of us.
Ivan, the guide cum driver took us to the island north-west of Tromsø, via a tunnel:
He put on a powerpoint presentation on the screen, which told a lot of myths and legends behind the Northern Lights aka Aurora Borealis. He also informed us that he had been taking people out to see the lights for 11 years now, and our chances of seeing one wass actually 70%. One of us said that we hoped we would not be part of the less lucky 30% .
While most parts of the sky were still clouded, there were patches of clear sky each time the wind blew the clouds away, and we could see the full moon:
We stopped a few times, each time when we saw some clear sky or rather patches of clear sky. We waited and there was no luck.
At one stopped, we had hot chocolate and chocolate cakes.
The last destination was at the lattitude of 70.02 North (that’s the northern-most part on earth I had ever been!), and Ivan told us that was the furthest we could go.
We waited until it was 11.15pm, and Ivan sadly told us we had to head back to Tromsø.
Reluctantly we resigned to the fact that we were finally to be part of the unlucky 30% . We got back into the bus, and one after another we started to doze off.
Suddenly the bus stopped! Ivan rushed us out. Half asleep, we were told to look up to the sky, and we saw this:
A very pale aurora!! DH quickly tried to capture as many shots as possible:
We looked in amazement, despite the light being very faint:
It moves from the right to the left (as expected – east to west):
Never mind that others had better luck, but we were very contented
The light seemed to thank us for our presence:
and it didn’t want to disappoint us, after all:
While we were gawking with amazement and disbelieve, it faded away…. The whole thing lasted for only 10 minutes or so.
That was our experience for the night, and I have to say the highlight of our stay in Norway!
Since that night, DH keeps on talking about the next aurora chasing trip – To Alaska!!
But for now, the next destination would be Oslo, en route home…
Share on Facebook