Aurora Australis - on Waiheke

Last year, by chance, Leonie and I caught the Aurora when we went to Rakiura. It was fantastic and a very special birthday present.

I never expected to see it on Waiheke tho.

Gordons road, past Whakanewha regional park

But thanks to some recent massive sunspot activity, we did - along with, if social media is to be believed, pretty much everyone else in New Zealand and most of the planet.

I'll leave the high quality shots up to Leonie - I'm still on my iPhone 12 mini which is not brilliant for night photography (it's great otherwise).

I found this diagram quite good for explaining what we were seeing. Thanks Canadian Space Agency (which I had no idea existed and now I'm thinking "Cannuuuuuukkkks in Spaaaaaaaaace")

But the storm was so huge - Kp8, touching Kp9, that we could even see it clearly, with the eye, in Auckland.

All of these shots are 3-5 seconds on an iPhone 12 mini mounted on a tripod. No processing. Sadly, the sensor is so small that as soon as you zoom a little, it's watercolour time.

My first shot, possibly the best composed...
It's strong enough to see even with the light polition of Auckland
Fingers, maybe STEVE
TBH my phone was kinda overexposing at this point

I'm not sure if those rays going up are STEVE or not, but either way, it was amazing to watch, 10 min drive from home.

Nic Wise

Nic Wise

Auckland, NZ