Wright County Minnesota
A filament erputed on the sun a couple of days priror and threw
a CME towards the earth which triggered a pretty nice northern
lights show when it collided with the Earth's atmosphere.
I wasn't expecting the CME to hit the earth quite as early as it did. I spent the evening watching the Chicago /
Washington hockey game and was getting ready for bed when I went to kick the cat out of the living room
window. Something had his attention and when I looked outside, this is what I saw. Time to head out the door!
I headed over to Maple Lake and stopped for a bit to see if the aurora was getting ready to pulse or if it was just
going to sit there and not do much. A Wright county deputy stopped to watch for a bit with me. At this point it
didn't seem like anything big was going to happen so I decided to move over to Lake Mary to the north.
Got to the top of the hill by Lake Mary but the oval still wasn't moving much but this other odd tier was still
hanging out stretching west to east not quite directly overhead. This is the view looking west.
|Another view showing the actual oval with the odd patches out ahead of it. Looking northwest.
|The oval was still just sitting there and I was getting bored. I set the intervalometer on the cam and just took in the night sky.
I should note I was wearing shorts and flip flops. October 2nd and taking full advantage of the warm weather.
|Got bored and moved again. This time went to the creek between Silver Lake and Lake Maria. Another deputy stopped for
a bit but got called away. The oval started to pulse and grew in brightness. About now I saw a post on FB from Mike
Hollingshead saying "S*** is about to get real" He wasn't kidding. It was pretty evident something big was incoming.
|BOOM! A substorm was triggered and the aurora went absolutely crazy. I was trying to get to the access on the south side
of Ida Lake but a farmer was chopping corn in this field. I thought a blur shot of the combine working with the aurora
surging overhead would be cool but he quit as soon as I got set up.
|Looking northeast. I don't think I've ever seen such a crisp edge to the aurora this far south.
| I really wanted to shoot over water at this point as the lights were unbelievably bright. I figured the paddle only
access at Bertram Lake would be a good bet. As I pulled in to the end of the long access road, I was shocked to see
someone else there. I wasn't about to head to another lake as I didn't want to miss the show so I set up anyhow. I
started to shoot the bull with the other guy and told him how surprised I was to see another photographer back in
here. (Keep in mind it is really dark out and we really can't see each other very well). He asked me my name so I
told him. He laughs and says "really?" I figured he knew the name from somewhere then he laughs again and says
"It's me. Kory Hartman." We both starting laughing at this point. Kory owns SevereStudios . I knew he had moved
from South Dakota to a town about 10 miles from me but we hadn't run into each other yet. We spent the next half
hour catching up on stuff and reliving some old times. Unfortunately the day jobs required us to be up in a few
hours so we called it a night. It was a great visit. That is Kory out on the dock. I hope we get to do it again some
The bright reds were starting to die off but the greens really picked up. The pillars were dying off but the motion was
still good overall in the wake of the blast which triggered the show.
The sky had now become a swirling green mass to the north. It was fun to watch but it was pretty evident the main
show was done so Kory and I headed our seperate ways.
A couple of miles from home I had to stop one last time. The northern lights are a phenomenon of the sky I can't
get enough of during the off season from storms.
One selfie before heading in for the night. I have always wanted a shot of the Milky Way with the auroras.
Tonight I got it.