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Welcome to the "2004
Alaskan Aurora Borealis March 18th Supplemental" gallery
The photographs below are my most recent
efforts. Included here are photographs from the 2004 Aurora Borealis
display as seen from various Alaskan locations in the evening
and early morning hours of late March, 2004. This particular gallery
is the 2004 Alaskan Aurora Borealis March 18th Supplemental Gallery.
If you wish to return to the main Aurora Borealis Gallery merely
close this window.
My wife's and my goal
was to travel to Alaska during the most prolific Aurora season,
which is either March or September, approaching the equinox. It
is generally accepted that a location near Chena Hot Springs,
AK (approx. 60 miles east and a little north of Fairbanks) is
"Aurora central," so to speak. The various complex reasons
for this phenomena can be explored by linking to the below-listed
scientific Aurora site.
Aurora -- Information and Images
-- is the site related to the Poker Flats research facility in
Alaska, but also includes general information concerning Aurora
and an excellent FAQ section. Also highly recommenced is the daily
Aurora prediction link.
Hot Springs Resort to learn more about the features of this
Aurora-centric resort facility.
photographs courtesy Chena Hot Springs)
On Thursday, March
18, 2004 we arrived in Fairbanks, rented a car and drove to
our selected B&B. After arrival, we "scouted"
for a slightly out-of-town location to view and photograph the
Aurora. Our selected spot was along the Chena Ridge / Chena
Pump Road. The photographs below and on the linked pages were
taken with the 35mm Pentax rig noted as above equipped with
a 28mm f/3.5 lens -- most exposures were in the neighborhood
of 45-60 seconds. The ambient air temperature was somewhat below
zero, perhaps minus 5-10 degrees F. I have chosen to label these
photos as taken on 3/18/04 --and have also chosen to use this
nomenclature throughout the presentation -- when in reality
many shots were taken at midnight or slightly after. In general
we found the Aurora to be most active between 10 P.M. and 2
A. M. local Alaskan time.
click on the thumbnail to view a larger version of the selected
the photographs below were taken with either a 35mm Pentax
Spotmatic or Pentax 6X7 camera mounted on a traditional tripod.
Lenses varied from standard to wide-angle -- this detail is
noted on the individual image pages. Film was Kodak Portra ISO
800 color negative film, developed normally. All exposures were
60 seconds or less. Approximate times are noted on the individual
The thumbnail photographs
seen and linked here to larger versions represent the very best
of quite a few Alaskan Aurora images we obtained. Because we observed
the Aurora on all four nights while in Alaska, I have included
other photographs obtained on this trip to present a more complete
Aurora experience for those interested. These links and specific
details are noted both below and on the individual image pages.
To further explore the "Something
New" section of astrophotographs.com please use the various
navigation strategies below the photographs.
Click a photo below
for a larger view and detailed information about how, when and
where it was taken.
The 2004 Alaskan Aurora Borealis astrophotography
is available via telephone ordering as noted below.