The fantastic Aurora Borealis display over Kalamalka Lake beach captured through an ultra wide angle lens and 20 second exposure on May 28th, 2017. (Jeremy Broad)

Northern lights expected above parts of B.C. this Labour Day weekend

U.S.-based Space Weather Prediction Center says Vancouver area to get a chance on Sunday

This weekend is bringing good news for sky watchers as U.S. forecasters call for the northern lights to be visible over Vancouver and other parts of B.C.

The Space Weather Prediction Center based in Boulder, Colo., says auroral activity will be high on Saturday from Yellowknife, Edmonton and Winnipeg, with low visibility above Seattle.

On Sunday, the atmospheric phenomenon should be visible in Greater Vancouver.

The aurora borealis is created by electrons colliding with the upper reaches of the Earth’s atmosphere.

According to the centre, the electrons are energized through “acceleration processes,” which allow them to follow the magnetic field of the planet down to the polar regions. There, the electrons collide with oxygen and nitrogen atoms, increasing the atoms’ energy. It’s as those atoms relax back down to lower energy states that light is formed.

ALSO READ: Northern lights chasers in Canada discover new type named ‘Steve’

The auroral forms are made of many tall rays that look much like folds of cloth, the centre said. At night, these rays can form arcs that stretch from horizon to horizon. Close to midnight, the arcs often begin to twist and sway, as if being blown by the wind.

The light show typically appears anywhere from 80 to 500 kilometres above Earth’s surface.

Of course, that’s only if the skies are clear. The best way to view the night sky is to find a high-up spot as far away from artificial lights, such as from street lamps and buildings, as possible.

ALSO READ: Sky gazers to flock to Manning Park Resort’s for its first foray into astrotourism


@ashwadhwani
ashley.wadhwani@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Leap Day birthday for Volunteer Cancer Drivers Society in Surrey and region

For these ‘Angels on Wheels,’ growth in Surrey area ‘has been remarkable’

17 medals for Delta athletes at 2020 BC Winter Games

More than 1,000 athletes from across the province competed in Fort St. John Feb. 20-23

White Rock man says landlord ‘threatened’ tenants for seeking cash after no heat over Christmas

Porte Realty VP says original notice was harsh and quickly replaced

Wally Oppal says policing ‘too important’ to be left to the police

Oppal was keynote speaker at a Surrey Board of Trade “Hot Topic Dialogue” breakfast event Wednesday

VIDEO: Wet’suwet’en supporters vow to keep protesting at B.C. legislature

Supporters say they will continue ongoing action to hold government accountable

B.C. seniors’ watchdog calls for better oversight after recent problems at Retirement Concepts care homes

‘There is no financial incentive right now to be a good operator’ - Isobel Mackenzie

Cypress Mountain offers free lift tickets March 13 in honour of snowboarding pioneer

Jake Burton Carpenter invented the sport of snowboarding

Trucking company fined $175K for Kootenay creek fuel spill

Decision handed down last Friday in Nelson court

B.C. city rebrands with new logo, cheeky slogan

‘Langford, where it all happens’ is the City’s new slogan

B.C. Liberals call for ban on foreign funds to pipeline protesters

Sierra Club, Wilderness Committee back Coastal GasLink blockades

Donations pour in for family who lost father, son in fatal crash on B.C. highway

Mike Cochlin and sons Liam and Quinn were travelling on Highway 5A

Most Read