People in the south have told me that they've seen the aurora before.
This is probably true. I've read that once in every ten years or so, you can even see it in Mexico. You can probably get a glimpse of it in southern Canada on clear nights when conditions are right.
But I think this is the best place to see it.
There seems to be a longer viewing season further north, but searching for it is far from fun. It is so cold that your boogers freeze. There's an ice fog. It's hard to drive out of town to look for the lights from your vehicle, because not only is your oil solidifying, but your tires seem to freeze to the road. You stay home with the thermostat cranked up (because at least half of the heat is lost through the windows) and ignore the aurora.
Tourism is huge here, especially for Japanese tour groups, all desperate for a peek at the aurora. The first time I saw one, I couldn't believe my eyes. We were in the airport, and I counted 31 Japanese people walking together and wearing the same outfit. One of my friends explained that the tour company meets the tourists at the airport and provides the winter gear. This made slightly more sense.
I've never been to Japan, but from everything I've heard, it seems like the opposite of Canada, especially this part of it. The tourists I've spoken to always remark that the territory is really big and really spread-out. This is true. We are 40,000 people in over a million square kilometers of bear country. In this town of 20,000 residents, we pretend that we are a city, but that's really a joke. We've just managed to carve out a few paved roads between the rocks, trees and aurora.
THIS BLOG HAS MOVED
Please join us at snowcoveredhills.com.
New posts on snowcoveredhills.com:
Sunday, January 21, 2007
Posted by Megan at 11:05 AM