December 5, 2003 Aurora

Submitted by: Dennis Anderson at Sun Jan 11 10:43:01 2004 UTC



The aurora shows tall colorful rays, bright enough to cut through the light of a full moon, in this shot looking north from Diamond Ridge, Homer, Alaska. I used a 6x9 cm. medium-format camera with a 50mm lens and Fuji Provia 100 to record the well-lit scene.

Copyright (c) 2003 Dennis C. Anderson Contact at auroradude@acsalaska.net or visit www.auroradude.com

Portrait of a Mountain

Submitted by: Dennis Anderson at Thu Jun 1 17:30:01 2006 UTC



The aurora gathers strength above Mount McKinley as seen from Denali State Park, Alaska in this 6:00 a.m. image taken with a 4x5 large format camera using a 150mm lens and Fuji Provia 100 film.

Copyright (c) 2003 Dennis C. Anderson Contact at auroradude@acsalaska.net or visit www.auroradude.com

Aurora from Diamond Ridge Dec 5, 2003

Submitted by: Dennis Anderson at Fri Jan 9 06:41:01 2004 UTC



The light of a bright moon illuminates the snow while a beautiful aurora graces the December sky above Diamond Ridge near Homer, Alaska. An early winter has begun to claim the hillsides covering them with snow and ice with a promise of much more to come. This image was acquired with a 50mm lens on a 6x9 medium format camera and Fuji Provia 100 film.

Copyright (c) 2003 Dennis C. Anderson Contact at auroradude@acsalaska.net or visit www.auroradude.com

Orion Over the Alaska Range

Submitted by: Dennis Anderson at Sun Jan 4 19:43:01 2004 UTC



The bright and familiar winter constellation of Orion is prominent over the moonlit central Alaska Range as seen in this view looking southwest from near where the Delta River leaves the mountains and heads to the north. This is a large format image acquired in late January 2003 with a 4x5 camera and 150mm lens on Fuji Provia 100F.

Copyright (c) 2003 Dennis C. Anderson Contact at auroradude@acsalaska.net or visit www.auoradude.com

Auroral Oval 16 September 2003

Submitted by: Dennis Anderson at Sun Jan 4 19:10:01 2004 UTC



Under the influence of a recurring coronal stream, the auroral oval slowly pushes southward in this view looking northwest from Alaska's Kenai Peninsula. The snow-capped volcano, Redoubt, is seen at right and is over 50 miles distant as seen across Cook Inlet while the aurora, reflected in the waters below, stretches perhaps 500 miles into the beyond. I used a 4x5 camera with a 150mm lens and Fuji Provia 100 film to capture this large format image.

Copyright (c) 2003 Dennis C. Anderson Contact at auroradude@acsalaska.net or visit www.auroradude.com

A Sky on Fire October 30-31 2003

Submitted by: Dennis Anderson at Tue Nov 25 21:31:02 2003 UTC



After an early showing of nice tall rays and green bands against a diffuse red glow, the sky had grown quiet just before midnight on the evening of October 30, 2003. Then, just before midnight local time, a bright ray appeared out of nowhere in the East and began to grow in intensity. Its bright reddish hue was easily discernable to the naked eye. As it brightened even more it began to resemble a huge flame leaping from the mountains and into the sky against the starry backdrop of Orion and Taurus. Two semi trucks pulling tandom trailers whipped past over the bridge above the Placer River located near Portage, Alaska and left their trails of complimentary lights reflected in the water below during the exposure.

Copyright (c) 2003 Dennis C. Anderson Contact at auroradude@acsalaska.net or visit www.auroradude.com

Truncated Aurora 18 October 2003

Submitted by: Dennis Anderson at Mon Nov 3 17:26:01 2003 UTC



The arrival of clouds was to cut short my chance of catching good auroral activity tonight. I had waited here for a couple hours here at Deep Creek, Alaska, watching as the arc of light slowly ebbed and waned but remained mostly unchanged during the length of my observation. Then, just after midnight, clouds, which are seen here catching the light of a quarter moon low on the Northeastern horizon, rolled in and began to fill the sky. Within 1/2 an hour they left the sky completely obscured with no chance of outrunning their swift approach. The next day we woke up to our first snowfall for the season for the Kenai Peninsula.

Copyright (c) 2003 Dennis C. Anderson Contact at auroradude@acsalaska.net or visit www.auroradude.com

South to the Northern Lights 29 October 2003

Submitted by: Dennis Anderson at Sun Nov 2 22:50:04 2003 UTC



This view is from the hills above the "Cosmic Hamlet by the Sea" also known as Homer, Alaska and is looking in a southeasterly direction towards the "northern lights". I have seen occasions where a strong aurora pushes so far south that the northern latitudes are left in somewhat of a void with only diminished activity. I suspect that was the case at times during this "Perfect Storm" of 2003. Later this morning though the aurora swung northwards again producing the nicest display of colors that I have witnessed since the great storm of March 31, 2001. I used a 6x9 medium format camera with a 50mm lens to capture the view on Fuji RHP400F film.

Copyright (c) 2003 Dennis C. Anderson Contact at auroraak@ptialaska.net or visit www.auroradude.com


Yellows Reflected 31 October2003

Submitted by: Dennis Anderson at Sun Nov 2 21:43:01 2003 UTC



As the "Perfect Storm" began to wind down the upper atmosphere seemed to be in a confused state. There were many auroral forms visible but a diffuse glow seemed to fill the whole sky as well. The upper reaches were reddish in hue while the lower forms green. The combination of looking through the green at the red above created many shades of yellow and orange as seen here on the morning of October 31, 2003 from Portage Lake, Alaska. Only the bluish cast of the sky seemed real and help to bring this odd coloring into perspective. We have all learned that mixing red crayons with green brought us a muddy brown but this is a subtractive process whereby some wavelengths of light tend to cancel others making the image darker. In the case of the auroras, the colors reinforce each other in an additive process whereby the overall product is brighter hue instead of darker thus the brighter shades of yellow and orange.

I took this image using a 30mm "fisheye" lens on a 6x6 medium format camera to capture a large part of the sky all at once.

Copyright (c) Dennis C. Anderson Contact at auroradude@acsalaska.net or visit www.auroradude.com

Colored Sky at Dawn 29 October 2003

Submitted by: Dennis Anderson at Sun Nov 2 08:59:01 2003 UTC



Warm colors of the approaching sun signal the start of a new day but the aurora had colors of its own that did not relinquish the sky easily. It took the very strongest twilight of late dawn to unseat the champion of the night sky and make preparations for the champion of the day. But the sun grows tired these days and its visits are getting shorter. The aurora will be back to rule the night once again.

I took this photo from our back yard in Homer, Alaska while my jaw was locked in an open position.

Copyright (c) 2003 Dennis C. Anderson Contact at auroradude@acsalaska.net or visit www.auroradude.com


Heavens Above 29 October 2003

Submitted by: Dennis Anderson at Sun Nov 2 04:36:01 2003 UTC



Tall colorful rays reach for the magnetic zenith and the very heavens above as a spectacular crowning aurora blazes overhead as seen from Homer, Alaska. This vivid display was witnessed by many as they began their morning routines. I was just about to end mine but after seeing this display, sleep was far from my revitalized psyche even after pulling another all-nighter. This photograph was made using a 6x9 medium format camera with a 50mm lens and a spectacular solar flare for special effects courtesy; Mother Nature.

Copyright (c) 2003 Dennis C. Anderson Contact at auroraak@ptialaska.net or visit www.auroradude.com




Nitrogen Blues

Submitted by: Dennis Anderson at Tue Nov 8 20:19:01 2005 UTC

On the early morning of October 29, 2003 I witnessed the strongest showing of deep blue aurora that I can remember. Colors at this end of the spectrum are very difficult for our eyes to perceive and more often blues and purples might show up on film that were undetected or barely perceptible visually. This morning was a spectacular exception as the blue and purple emissions were strong enough to become especially vivid to the eye. Here the beautiful tall rays, reaching to overhead, are seen above our home, located in Homer, Alaska, at about 6:30 a.m. local time.

I used a 6x9 medium format camera and 50mm lens to capture the spectacle. copyright (c) 2003 Dennis C. Anderson Contact at auroradude@acsalaska.net or visit www.auroradude.com

Blue Sky Morning 29 October 2003 Submitted by: Dennis Anderson at Sun Nov 2 02:28:01 2003 UTC



Rainbow Crowning 29 October 2003

Submitted by: Dennis Anderson at Sun Nov 2 00:11:02 2003 UTC



After the initial activity hours before the aurora of early October 29 was nothing spectacular. I had really given up on it around 5:30 a.m. local time but thought I'd better check again around 6 a.m. I'm sure glad I did! It was reorganizing and then a bright band swung southward with a nice but relatively brief crowning. But it was here, around 6:40, that the now stronger band swung northward again and produced the a spectacular crowning with many colors visible to the unaided eye. The deep blues and purples were remarkable, produced as the near-dawn sunlight added extra energy to the upper reaches of the tall rays. The sky was entirely filled with these long rays like radial spokes converging at the magnetic zenith overhead. I captured this image from my back yard in Homer, Alaska on a 6x9 medium format camera with a 50mm wide angle lens (equivalent of about 20mm on a 35mm camera).

Copyright (c) 2003 Dennis C. Anderson Contact at auroradude@acsalaska.net or visit www.auroradude.com

"MAELSTROM"

Submitted by: Dennis Anderson at Thu Oct 11 23:28:01 2007 UTC

The evening of October 30, 2003 had started with a lull but now, just after midnight on the 31st, the Great Storm of October 28-31 resumed with a brilliant display in the eastern sky. Reds combined with greens to form beautiful hues of yellows and oranges in this firey display. I recorded the moment from the Placer River about an hour southeast of Anchorage, Alaska using a home-built 6x9cm. medium-format camera with a 50mm lens and Fuji 400F film. Copyright (c) Dennis C. Anderson Night Trax Photography Contact at: auroradude@acsalaska.net or visit: www.auroradude.com

"CALM BELOW THE STORM"

Submitted by: Dennis Anderson at Thu Oct 11 23:05:01 2007 UTC

In the upper atmosphere the aurora was still glowing brightly as the great geomagnetic storm of October 28-31 was just beginning to abate. This great geomagnetic event, caused by two super flares on the sun, had stripped layers off the Earth's upper atmosphere that required several months to fully recover. At the surface of the Earth, the atmosphere had remained an eery calm throughout with only a slight breeze wafting across the peaceful lake. Oxygen reds and greens combine to form yet other hues and a purple nitrogen fringe is seen at the bottoms of the greens indicating highly charged particles that penetrate the atmosphere to a greater depth. I used a 6x7cm. home-built medium-format camera to record the moment. Copyright (c) Dennis C. Anderson Night Trax Photography Contact at: auroradude@acsalaska.net or visit: www.auroradude.com

Fire and Ice 31 October 2003

Submitted by: Dennis Anderson at Sat Nov 1 13:40:01 2003 UTC



The aurora borealis exhibits fiery colors of an energetic display above as icebergs drift slowly by carried by the currents on Portage Lake, Alaska below. While photographing this early morning scene on October 31, 2003, the glacier, located on the far end of the lake, calved more burgs producing a tremendous roar that pierced the calm of the pre-dawn and echoed throughout the valley. I captured the moment with a 6x9 medium format camera and Fuji Provia 400F.

Copyright (c) 2003 Dennis C. Anderson Contact at auroradude@acsalaska.net or visit www.auroradude.com

A Ghost Tree 31 October 2003

Submitted by: Dennis Anderson at Sat Nov 1 08:21:01 2003 UTC



Fantastic crimson shades of the powerful aurora of October 31, 2003 bring this once majestic tree back to life appropriately on All Hallowed Eve or Halloween, a day celebrating the dead. The tree is part of Alaska's Ghost Forest, created when a huge tract of land sank during the tremendous Good Friday Earthquake of 1964. Salt water rushed into lowlands thereby killing the trees but in the process the trees were also preserved by the salt water and most are still standing to this day. This ghostly tree resides in the Turnagain Arm of Cook Inlet about an hour from Anchorage.

Copyright (c) 2003 Dennis C. Anderson Contact at auroradude@acsalaska or visit www.auroradude.com

"ION BUTTERFLY"

Submitted by: Dennis Anderson at Thu Oct 11 17:45:01 2007 UTC

On March 29, 2001 a tremendous solar flare released a huge barrage of charged particles in a massive CME. This flare, and resulting radiation storm, were amongst the largest ever recorded and literally "pegged the needles". When the CME or coronal mass ejection, reached the Earth about 30 hours later, it created spectacular auroras that were seen all the way south to Mexico City and Cuba. Auroras are only visible in the tropics once or twice a century. I photographed this beautiful display from Alaska's Kenai Peninsula as it filled the southern sky to overhead using a 6x6cm medium-format camera equipped with a fisheye lens. Copyright (c) Dennis C. Anderson Night Trax Photography Contact at: auroradude@acsalaska.net or vbisit: www.auroradude.com

"TYE DYE SKY"

Submitted by: Dennis Anderson at Thu Oct 11 18:09:01 2007 UTC

This photograph was taken on March 31, 2001 about a minute after the image "Ion Butterfly" seen above. This incredible auroral display was rapidly moving northward and started to fill the sky overhead. A fisheye lens and 6x6cm. medium-format camera were used to record the intense colors from Alaska's Kenai Peninsula. Copyright (c) Dennis C. Anderson Night Trax Photography Contact at: auroradude@acsalaska.net or visit: www.auroradude.com

"RAINBOW RIDER"

Submitted by: Dennis Anderson at Thu Oct 11 18:09:01 2007 UTC

This is another photograph of the great aurora of March 31, 2001 taken a minute after the image, "Tye Dye Sky" seen above. The colorful display was now filling the sky and all I could do was point the camera up to try and capture even a part of it. I can only hope that I live long enough to witness another show such as this! Copyright (c) Dennis C. Anderson Night Trax Photography Contact at: auroradude@acsalaska.net or visit: www.auroradude.com

The Early Show 16 October 2003

Submitted by: Dennis Anderson at Sun Oct 26 19:42:10 2003 UTC



The aurora came as a gentle arc tonight visible at dusk just after 8 p.m. By the time I took this photo at 9:30 p.m. the aurora was working itself into a frenzy. Multiple bands are visible here as a very bright element casts its intense light on Mount McKinley bringing the 20,320 foot peak out of the shadow of darkness. I used a 6x7 medium format camera with 75mm lens and Kodak E100VS for this 20 second exposure.

Copyright (c) 2003 Dennis C. Anderson Contact at auroradude@acsalaska.net or visit www.auroradude.com

Early Evening Aurora 16 October 2003

Submitted by: Dennis Anderson at Sun Oct 26 19:42:10 2003 UTC



A dusky twilight is still present in the northwest as the aurora borealis gathers strength in this early evening image. It was just after 8 p.m. when I first saw the tell-tale greenish glow in the north in what would be an all night affair with the magical lights. This shot was taken at 8:20 p.m. from near Talkeetna, Alaska in the direction of North America's tallest peak Mount McKinley which is seen at the right separating day from night. I used a 6x9 medium format camera with a wide angle 50mm lens and Kodak E100S film to capture the scene. Copyright (c) Dennis C. Anderson Contact at auroradude@acsalaska.net or visit www.auroradude.com

Aurora Reflections 16 October 2003

Submitted by: Dennis Anderson at Sat Oct 25 08:45:31 2003 UTC



The aurora borealis begins to organize from a diffuse arc into a discrete band in the Northwest as seen from near Portage, Alaska. It is reflected in still water which is beginning to ice up on this frosty morning around 3:45 a.m. local time. A mist hangs in the fall air which, by dawn had grown into a full fledged fog bank in this swampy area near the 20 Mile River. Fuji Provia 400F and a medium format 6x9 camera were used to record this image.

Copyright (c) 2003 Dennis C. Anderson Contact at auroradude@acsalaska.net or visit www.auroradude.com


Mirror Pond Aurora 18 September 2003

Submitted by: Dennis Anderson at Wed Oct 22 10:24:02 2003 UTC



Tonight the air was absolutely still. This allowed the surface of this small pond to become mirror like. The northern lights, low above the horizon , were making their way gently across the sky and sending up occasional tall rays. These were then reflected in the peaceful water below creating a beautiful sight. Sprinkled stars twinkled throughout the sky while our "Big Dipper" did its part to indicate the direction of this photo. This nocturnal scene was played out along the Anchor River, located on Alaska's Southern Kenai Peninsula, just after midnight September 18, 2003. I used a 50mm lens and 6x9 medium format camera with Fuji Provia 400F to record the moment.

Copyright (c) 2003 Dennis C. Anderson Contact at auroradude@acsalaska.net or visit www.auroradude.com

Encore 16 September 2003

Submitted by: Dennis Anderson at Mon Oct 20 23:22:01 2003 UTC



Many times, just as I think the aurora is done for the night it gathers strength near dawn. I'm not sure if the addition of direct sunlight to the aurora,which by now is up and out of the Earth's shadow, causes this effect or if it is a coincidence but it always keeps me out until the dawn. More times than not I am not disappointed. On this morning the aurora had a very nice encore in store for me as I took this shot at 6:15 a.m. local time. By 6:30 it was too light to see any remaining traces of aurora. I used a 6x7 medium format camera equipped with a 75mm lens to obtain this image.

Copyright (c) 2003 Dennis C. Anderson Contact at auroradude@acsalaska.net or visit www.auroradude.com

Nitrogen Purple 16 September 2003

Submitted by: Dennis Anderson at Mon Oct 20 19:07:01 2003 UTC



At 6:00 a.m. local time the dawn is beginning to show in this image of the aurora borealis taken on September 16, 2003. Tall rays of blue-purple are produced as nitrogen high in the atmosphere catches direct sunlight and is coaxed into producing the beautiful hues in a process known as resonance scattering. This color can be very hard to detect visually as our eyes are not very sensitive at this end of the spectrum. Indeed, this beautiful color was barely perceptible on this particular occasion. Photographic film on the other hand is sensitive to a broad range of wavelengths in the visible spectrum and will pick up even faint emissions that might not register as color in our eyes. On very rare occasions the emissions might be very bright and at this time the purple can be vivid even to our eyes.

Copyright (c) 2003 Dennis C. Anderson Contact at auroradude@acsalaska.net or visit www.auroradude.com

Aurora over the Alaska Range 16 October 2003

Submitted by: Dennis Anderson at Sun Oct 19 22:25:05 2003 UTC



Part of the Central Alaska Range is visible at the bottom of this photo with the tallest peak 20,320 foot Mount McKinley at right and the second tallest 17,400 foot Mount Foraker to the left and 14,473 foot Mount Hunter in the center. As tall as these peaks are they don't even come close to the 50 to 100 mile altitude of a typical aurora. That the aurora seems to touch the peaks is only an illusion of line of sight as the aurora is typically about 500 miles distant where it meets the horizon. The mountain peaks are about 50 to 60 miles distant from my site near Talkeetna, Alaska. I took this image with a 4x5 large format camera equipped with a 150mm lens just after 11 p.m. local time on October 16, 2003.

Copyright (c) 2003 Dennis C. Anderson Contact at auroradude@acsalaska.net or visit www.aurordude.com

Mars Reflected 13 August 2003

Submitted by: Dennis Anderson at Sun Oct 19 20:57:01 2003 UTC



The red planet Mars is seen here near its greatest brilliancy during the recent close approach. The ruddy hue of this bright planet is most apparent in the reflection below where the light is spread out across the water so it didn't over saturate the film like the blazing planet itself did. This image is taken at Portage Lake, Alaska as the moon, low in the East, begins to paint the mountains and hanging glaciers with its own yellowish glow. I took this image with a 6x7 medium format camera and 75mm lens. Copyright (c) Dennis C. Anderson Contact at auroradude@acsalaska.net or visit www.auroradude.cpm

Portrait of a Mountain II

Submitted by: Dennis Anderson at Thu Jun 1 17:46:01 2006 UTC

Year after year I return to this spot in hopes of a better shot and I have never been disappointed. This October 17, 2003 night held its own. Mount McKinley is bathed in the light of the moon as well as that of an active auroral display as seen from a favorite viewpoint located on the Chulitna River in Denali State Park, Alaska. As this popular tourist spot is being replaced by an improved version further down the road it gave me an opportunity for a new perspective for this shot was taken from atop a massive mound of earth as the bulldozer was doing its work. I used a 4x5 large format camera equipped with a 150mm f/2.8 lens for this rich image of North America's tallest peak. Copyright (c) Dennis C. Anderson Contact at auroradude@acsalaska.net or visit www.auroradude.com

Tree Top Crowning 17 October 2003

Submitted by: Dennis Anderson at Sun Oct 19 10:42:01 2003 UTC



This beautiful crowning aurora was photographed from under the forest canopy near Talkeetna, Alaska just after midnight October 17, 2003. I was making my way through the dark woods down to a lake when I decided to look up. The image was shot on a medium format 6x9 camera with a 50mm wide angle lens and a sore neck. Copyright (c) 2003 Dennis C. Anderson contact at auroradude@acsalaska.net or visit www.auroradude.com

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