Monday, 23 January 2012

Extraordinary light display of Northern Lights .... in the skies above YORKSHIRE!


These extraordinary colours filled the sky above Yorkshire last night as the Northern Lights unfolded over the British Isles.
Subtle hues of purple, yellow, orange, and even neon green filled the heavens.
The aurora borealis, normally only visible in the Arctic Circle, reached so far South because of an unusually powerful solar explosion.
The stunning lights are expected to be visible again tomorrow and Wednesday night after a further strong solar storm early today.
The lonely Tan Hill Pub on the Pennine moorland in North Yorkshire is dwarfed as the stunning light show fills the sky above
The lonely Tan Hill Pub on the Pennine moorland in North Yorkshire is dwarfed as the stunning light show fills the sky above

Two walkers on the moors of the Pennines in County Durham pause to take in the flickering light show
Two walkers on the moors of the Pennines in County Durham pause to take in the flickering light show
Photographer Reed Ingram Weir took these beautiful snaps on the A1 near Alnwick, Northumberland
Green glory: Photographer Reed Ingram Weir took this beautiful picture from the A1 near Alnwick, Northumberland
Stargazers in parts of Scotland, Northern Ireland, Ireland and north-east England were able to see the dazzling display.

The Northern Lights have appeared more vividly and are visible over a wider area than normal because of a coronal mass ejection, (CME), a burst of electrically charged particles thrown out by the Sun, which was noticed by astronomers last week.
CMEs send streams of highly charged particles across space to collide with atoms in the upper earth atmosphere. They occur when the confined solar atmosphere suddenly and violently releases bubbles of gas and magnetic fields.
A large CME can contain a billion tons of matter accelerating to several million miles per hour in a spectacular explosion.
The night sky above the A1
The night sky above the A1. Stargazers in Northern Ireland, Ireland and in North East England were also able to see the dazzling display

Stargazers in parts of Scotland, Northern Ireland, Ireland and in North East England were also able to see the dazzling display.[
Stargazers in parts of Scotland, Northern Ireland, Ireland and in North East England were also able to see the dazzling display.[

In spite of light pollution obsuring much of the lower horzions of the night sky, the dramatic glowing mass that is the Milky Way galaxy shines (top left to bottom right) creating a dazzling display in Teesdale, County Durham
In spite of light pollution obscuring much of the lower horizons of the night sky, the dramatic glowing mass that is the Milky Way galaxy shines (top left to bottom right) creating a dazzling display in Teesdale, County Durham
Photographer Paul Kingston captured the breath-taking sight over the Tan Hill Inn in the Pennines on Sunday evening.
He said: 'To the naked eye it was so subtle, that at first I didn’t realise exactly what I was seeing - but a long exposure in the camera made it suddenly jump out at me, and then, as my eyes became more and more attuned I could see it flickering across the sky more and more clearly - a fantastic sight and one I have never seen, or expected to see in this part of the country.'
Peter Richardson, 49, a bar man at the Tan Hill pub said: 'It was very surreal. We are used to seeing spectacular sunsets and sunrises in this part of the country, so I didn’t know what to expect when I heard we could see the Northern Lights.

'There was a gentle array of colours, mainly oranges and greens.

'It was nice to see, very pretty. Two girls that work at the pub came out too and they were really impressed, they were absolutely blown away.

'Part of me was thinking it’s very spiritual and existential, but part of me was thinking it’s freezing!

'You could see the colours were shifting in the skies, it was great as a piece of living theatre.

'The pictures look absolutely stunning, it was a lot more visible on the photos than to the naked eye.'

Walkers on the moors of the Pennines in County Durham also paused to take in the flickering light show that filled the sky above them.

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