Photo courtesy Michael Snyder.

Did you happen to catch the Northern Lights over our area on Friday night, May 10, 2024?

This atmospheric phenomenon is regarded by many as the “Holy Grail” of skywatching.

Caused by the largest geomagnetic storm in nearly two decades, these lights produced a beautiful glow in the sky all over the world, including our region.

It all started when a G5-level sunspot sent a stream of charged particles towards our little blue planet.

As those particles hit the earth’s atmosphere, they heat up and start glowing, producing a beautiful, colorful aurora borealis.

Did you see them? If not, we highly recommend you try again tonight (Saturday, May 11, 2024); read more from the National Weather Service here.

According to Space.com:

“The northern lights are created when energized particles from the sun slam into Earth’s upper atmosphere at speeds of up to 45 million mph (72 million kph), but our planet’s magnetic field protects us from the onslaught. 

“As Earth’s magnetic field redirects the particles toward the poles — there are southern lights, too, which you can read about below — the dramatic process transforms into a cinematic atmospheric phenomenon that dazzles and fascinates scientists and skywatchers alike.”

Photos

Below are some photos we found on social media taken in our region:

https://youtu.be/u8aXSmGdZjo?si=azlApmM3n3po6ybg
https://youtu.be/rzhRad0aONc?si=bWkGEtr9pxwF_s-0