One of the most amazing things to experience in nature are the northern lights, aurora borealis. These natural lights at an altitude of 100 km are created when charged particles from the sun collide with atoms and molecules in the Earth’s atmosphere. Iceland is located in the northern light belt that surrounds the North Pole, about 2000 to 3000 km away from the magnetic pole. But how and where do you see and photograph the aurora borealis. It is an interaction of many factors. First and foremost, there are usually auroras going on. The Icelandic Meteorological Office has a good aurora forecast (in English and Icelandic) about possible activity. Then, of course, you need clear skies, and if all this is lines up, then you have to settle yourself in a good place, away from built-up areas and light pollution. Then it’s just a matter of waiting, with a good tripod, a good camera and a lens that captures the moment when it finally arrives. Yes, the best photos are then created with a little luck, because the northern lights are and will not be controlled. The northern lights are unrelated to terrestrial weather, but of course they are not visible in the summer, when the nights are bright. According to the forecast of the Icelandic Meteorological Office, there is little activity for the next few days.
Iceland 2018/2022 : RX1R II, A7R IV – 2.0/35mm Z, FE 2.0/28mm G Photographs & text: Páll Stefánsson