Northern lights on Alaska cruises

Discussion in 'Disney Cruise Line Forum' started by m1ckeym0use1, Apr 2, 2012.

  1. m1ckeym0use1

    m1ckeym0use1 Mouseketeer

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    Does anyone know if there's much chance of seeing the northern lights from the boat while on an Alaska cruise? Or is that more of a winter thing?
     
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  3. PrincessShmoo

    PrincessShmoo DIS Veteran

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    It's more of a winter thing, when there's more hours of darkness than light. And more above the arctic circle, which the ship doesn't go near.

    :cutie:
     
  4. Gilland18

    Gilland18 DIS Veteran

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    In general, as PP states; not far enough north and too much light.
     
  5. trimix

    trimix DIS Veteran

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    I live between Seattle and Vancouver, probably at a latitude clost to the OP, and I regularly see the aurora from my house.

    The aurora is nothing like what you see in pictures - you can't take a 15 second exposure with your eyes. The look really reminds me of the light pollution glow you see from a big city, and I have to drive east into the mountains to get away from the city lights to my north before I can see patterns in the light to differentiate the aurora from light pollution.

    In Juneau astronomical twilight will not end until August 16th, so most cruises don't get a real dark night. But check Spaceweather just before and during your cruise - if you are sailing close to a new moon, and a decent coronal mass ejection comes our way, there is a good chance of seeing something of the aurora when the sun is furthest below the horizon.
     
  6. m1ckeym0use1

    m1ckeym0use1 Mouseketeer

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    Thanks for all the replies. Sounds like I won't need to get up in the middle of the night to check the sky.
     
  7. LemonPie

    LemonPie Mouseketeer

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    Darn I was hoping to hear some good replies. We used to live in Finland and often saw the Northern Lights but it was usually winter. The kids don't remember seeing them so I was hoping we might get lucky. We take the last Alaskan cruise of the season so we will still cross our fingers.
     
  8. Gilland18

    Gilland18 DIS Veteran

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    I have read reports of people seeing them last year. You could get lucky.
     
  9. alaskanabbott

    alaskanabbott DIS Veteran

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    I think you are going to be a little far south, and have too much daylight. I'm on the Kenai Peninsula and we have a few nights a year that we really get good Northern Lights, always in the winter. A PP said they are not like what you see in pictures, but here in Alaska they are!! A few month ago we sat on the front porch and watched them rip through the sky, bright enough to read a book by...blue green and purple. They danced for about 45 minutes. I will see if I can find the pictures. I hope you get lucky on your cruise, it really is amazing!
     
  10. PrincessShmoo

    PrincessShmoo DIS Veteran

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    :offtopic: Hey, we're going to be on the Kenai Peninsula in a couple of weeks! First trip that far north! :cool1:

    :cutie:
     
  11. DizDays

    DizDays DVC & D23 Member

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    I'll be on the same cruise. We are crossing our fingers with you! That would be totally awesome to see that.
     
  12. alaskanabbott

    alaskanabbott DIS Veteran

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    Awesome! We will have to take you to lunch! Are you up here fishing? Bringing kids? If you need anything let me know :) We live in Soldotna.
     
  13. MelissaE1

    MelissaE1 Truly believes in the Magic

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    My first cruise was to Alaska on Sitmar, a line that was later absorbed by Princess. We went in August and saw the Northern Lights. I don't remember exactly where we were, probably as far north as possible. They were amazing to see!
     
  14. n8tivecaligirl

    n8tivecaligirl Mouseketeer

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    OK, In summer Alaska has more daytime than night. To see the NL it needs to be dark, so winter is best because of course there is more night than daytime. It is not likely to see the NL on a cruise because the time of year that they run (may-sept) is too light. I was bummed too when I went last year. Oh well another reason to go back to Alaska! Enjoy your trip, you'll love it! :yay:
     
  15. PrincessShmoo

    PrincessShmoo DIS Veteran

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    Well, we're on a cruise/tour. The day we transfer from Anchorage to the ship (Seward) we're taking a Kenai Fjords tour enroute to the ship.

    I can't wait.

    princess:
     
  16. pjacobi

    pjacobi DIS Veteran

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    Here is the link to Aurora forecast.

    http://www.gi.alaska.edu/AuroraForecast


    I was in a restaurant in Anchorage and overheard a customer asking the waitress to close the shades because the sun was in his eyes - at 10PM!


    -Paul
     
  17. jackieinJuneau

    jackieinJuneau Mouseketeer

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    I have lived in Juneau for 5 years we are far enough north for the northern lights! But in the summer the daylight hours are so long that the peak time for northern lights about 4am its already bright at mid morning. In fact I am typing this at 4am, I work mid nights, and its already light out, the birds are chirping by 3am. Also Juneau is really cloudy we have about 222 days of rain with more over cast so even when its dark we don't get to seem them too often.
     

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