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Old 03-20-2017, 02:35 PM
 
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Was curious if there are any places that experience it somewhat regularly that have:
1. Regular, and affordable (<$400 RT) Airfare
2. Some type of European-ish/walkable town as a center base to go to at beginning/end of trip (Candidates I've thought up so far that would seem to maybe be far north enough would be: Duluth, Montreal, Quebec City, Halifax (Lunenburg) and Saint John's. Are these far enough north to have a 50% or better chance of seeing it during the winter, though?
3. Some type of interesting nature nearby (mountains, gorges, etc.) within a few hours to do some winter hiking.


Is there anywhere that fits this billing?
If not, I may eventually save up for a Reykjavik or an Anchorage, but would prefer to do something closer in, and cheaper.
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Old 03-20-2017, 03:36 PM
 
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I'm not an aurora expert, just an avid fan.

With that said, if I were to plan a trip to see them, I'd save up for Alaska, northern Canada or northern Europe.

I've seen them twice, both in the summer- once near Seattle and the other in southern Saskatchwan. I don't know about percentages in the northern US or southern Canada, but I don't know that I'd be betting the farm (or even 50% of it) on seeing a spectacular display that far south. Remember that the further south you are, the more on the horizon they will be, add to that ambient light from civilization and possible cloud cover, and you could very well come away disappointed.

I've not been to Duluth, but I have been to the other cities you mentioned. They're definitely worth the trip, even if the lights don't make an appearance.
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Old 03-20-2017, 04:14 PM
 
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Thanks for your feedback : ) So, you really lucked out then, getting to see them at those points in time! Even in winter, it isn't so great? It would make sense to me if so, since even in Northern Newfoundland, you're really at about the same latitude as London, but still, I had hopes for somewhere like that. However, I definitely still plan to make a trip to one (or all) of those places, certainly!
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Old 03-20-2017, 04:20 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cavsfan137 View Post
Thanks for your feedback : ) So, you really lucked out then, getting to see them at those points in time! Even in winter, it isn't so great? It would make sense to me if so, since even in Northern Newfoundland, you're really at about the same latitude as London, but still, I had hopes for somewhere like that. However, I definitely still plan to make a trip to one (or all) of those places, certainly!
It's definitely more "touch and go" the further south you get.

Remember too, that if you're staying south, you're going to need to find a place that is as far away as possible from ambient light, north-facing, and preferably higher up. Also, keep in mind that a lot of times, the aurora comes out as white, perhaps with a bit of green, with the naked eye. You'll need a good SLR camera to get the good shots.

For example, these photos were taken in June 2015, at a mountain north of Seattle. It was visible to the naked eye, but only as white streaks in the sky. These photos were taken with an SLR with 30 second exposure.
Attached Thumbnails
Best Place to try to see Aurora Borealis in Eastern North America???-dsc_0133.jpg   Best Place to try to see Aurora Borealis in Eastern North America???-dsc_0141.jpg  
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