It was our third night in Iceland and finally the rain and fog cleared and the sky was speckled with stars as we checked into our farmhouse cottage in Hellisholar. We asked the owner of the property what our chances of seeing the Northern Lights were. He stepped outside and said, "If you can see those stars, you will see the lights here. Go sit in the hot tub and wait until 10pm."
Like giddy school children, my friends and I relaxed in the hot (err, more like lukewarm, but i'm not complaining because this is Iceland) tub. We laid our heads back drinking Einstok with our eyes glued upward. The stars alone were a sight to see. Never before have I seen so many glittering lights with my bare eyes.
10pm started to roll around and we were getting impatient but I remained stubborn and insistent that tonight would be the night! As we headed back to our cottage, we all stopped in our frozen tracks and gasped.
HOLY SHIT WHAT IS THE SKY DOING OVER THERE? There were bright white lights in the oddest forms floating above our little cottage. OMG, this is it, they are coming! I couldn't race back to our cottage fast enough to grab my tripod and set my Nikon's slow shutter speed.
The Northern Lights are the result of collisions between gaseous particles in the Earth's atmosphere with charged particles released from the sun's atmosphere. Beautiful colors fold like curtains and light jumps and dances as a result.
I stayed outside in awe and near tears watching the mysterious green glow above the red and orange streaks. It was like someone was taking a paintbrush to the sky from above. Absolutely beautiful and I don't fully understand it but I think that only adds to the magic.
If seeing the Northern Lights is not yet at the top of your bucket list, do yourself a favor and add it now!!