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

VicPD confirms wolf sighting in James Bay

Police ask that children and pets be taken inside

VIDEO: Furry, four-legged donors make their way to doggy blood drive in Langford

WAVES and Canadian Animal Blood Bank host blood drive for dogs

Annual Salmon Carcass Transplant draws Saanich residents to Douglas Creek

More than 100 frozen salmon tossed into the creek as part of ecological restoration

Colwood hosts open house on future of Royal Bay community

Event takes place on Jan. 22 at Royal Bay Secondary from 6 to 8 p.m.

WATCH: Police warn car break-ins are on the rise in Greater Victoria

Residents can ‘take precautions to make their vehicle undesirable,’ says VicPD spokesperson

‘Presumptive case’ of coronavirus in Canada confirmed by Ontario doctors

Man in his 50s felt ill on his return to Canada from Wuhan, China

VIDEO: Drone footage shows extent of damage in Highway 4 rockslide

Tofino, Ucluelet still cut off from rest of the island, as crews work to repair roadway

People knowingly take fentanyl so make policy changes to reduce harm: B.C. study

Dr. Jane Buxton, an epidemiologist at the centre, says drug users need more resources,

‘My heart is going to bleed’: Bodies brought back to Canada following Iran plane crash

Remains of Sahar Haghjoo, 37, and her eight-year-old daughter, Elsa Jadidi, were identified last weekend

BCLC opens novelty bet on Harry and Meghan moving to the west coast

Meanwhile, real estate agency points to four possible homes for the family

Canada slips in global corruption ranking in aftermath of SNC-Lavalin scandal

The country obtained a score of 77, which places it at the top in the Americas

Wuhan bans cars, Hong Kong closes schools as coronavirus spreads

Hong Kong leader Carrie Lam said her government will raise its response level to emergency, highest one

Vernon woman suing McDonald’s for spilled coffee

Woman seeking nearly $10K, says employee failed to put lid on properly

Most Read