What Are the Northern Lights & What Causes Them?

The splendid moving lights of the Aurora Borealis are really collisions between electrically charged particles from the sun that enter the world’s environment. The lights are seen over the northern and southern halves of the globe. This phenomenon is known as ‘Aurora borealis’ in the north and ‘Aurora Australis’ in the south. The term ‘Aurora borealis’ comes from the Latin Aurora, meaning “Roman goddess of the dawn” plus Latin Borealis, meaning “north.” This is why the Aurora Borealis is also called the Northern Lights.

Auroral presentations show up in many hues albeit light green and pink are the most widely recognized. Shades of red, yellow, green, blue, and violet have been accounted for. The lights show up in many structures from patches or scattered billows of light to streamers, circular segments, undulating drapes or shooting beams that light up the sky with an eerie shine.

When Can You See the Aurora Borealis?

We love seeing our guests in the summertime, but did you know that Alaska is also breathtakingly beautiful in the wintertime? For some, an Alaskan winter may seem cold and daunting, but this is mostly a myth. While Alaskan winters aren’t for the faint of heart, the striking beauty and peacefulness are well worth it. The closer you are to the north pole, the better chance you’ll have at seeing the Northern lights. However, in some exceptional solar storm years, such as in 2012, you can see the Aurora Borealis from Kodiak Island, near the location of Afognak Wilderness Lodge.

Visit Kodiak & Book Your Stay at Afognak Wilderness Lodge!

Afognak Wilderness Lodge in Kodiak, Alaska is a classy and authentic wilderness lodge in the heart of a peaceful coastal park. Our cabins are the perfect balance of rustic log cabins with modern comforts and an elegant touch. You’ll love the abundant wildlife—both on land and at sea, including outstanding fresh and saltwater fishing. To book your stay at Afognak Wilderness Lodge, or if you have any questions, please contact us. We can’t wait to welcome you and introduce you to an experience you’ll never forget!

In the meantime, we’ll leave you with this amazing time-lapse video we found on youtube.