living through death

"The only way that you can accept life is if you can accept death.” –Leo Buscaglia

Last Night: Within Reach of a Solar Storm

with 4 comments

The conditions were perfect. This was the largest coronal mass ejection that had been aimed directly at earth in a decade. But I was tired, and the action was probably not going to start until after midnight. Lucky my social media chatter about the event attracted two friends of mine who were itching to see the auroras.

We set out for the darkest sky we could find down a minimum maintenance road past a sign that read: “Most people meet the Lord through prayer, but trespassing is quicker.” We parked the vehicle and set out to do some recon. As we made our way through the chilly March darkness someone said, “What left these tracks? They’re huge!” About then there was a thundering sound off to our right and the sound of a large body crashing through the brush. Our headlamps reflected in giant eyes as the beast lunged past us… a horse, unencumbered by a fence.

We set up near a field and the glow on the horizon briefly intensified into shimmering pillars of light before returning to a slowly fading glow for the next few hours. The rest of the night passed without event, aside from a somewhat confused encounter with a local man in his skid-steer at quarter to 1:00 in the morning. A perfect night.

The aroras light up the sky over central Minnesota during the St. Patrick's day solar storm.

More great Minnesota photography here!

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Written by Alex

March 18, 2015 at 10:02 am

4 Responses

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  1. Whoa! I wish I could have been there with you. So beautiful.

    tylerkellen

    March 19, 2015 at 10:09 am

    • Did you have a chance to see them in Vermont, Tyler?

      Alex

      March 19, 2015 at 10:12 am

      • Sadly no, we’re down in Honduras right now learning to scuba dive. Today is our third day of training–we’ll get our certification this afternoon!

        tylerkellen

        March 19, 2015 at 10:15 am

        • Not a bad consolation prize, I’d say! Can’t wait to hear all about it!

          Alex

          March 19, 2015 at 10:42 am


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