The aurora borealis – the northern lights – is a very popular topic in the area. After all, Alta is “The City of the Northern Lights”, so it’s no surprise that people would be coming here for a chance to see it in the winter. We get lots of questions every year from people hoping to maximize their chances of seeing the fascinating natural phenomenon.
We are done with nighttime now – the sky last night at midnight was still a glowing twilight – and seeing the aurora is a thing of memory until next September. It might seem a little late to be writing about the northern lights, but the planning for next year’s holiday never stops and we’re already fielding inquiries for next year.
So here is a little story, written out in FAQ form, compiled from conversations that I have now and then with travelers. Hope you get a chuckle.
Q: Hi there! We want to come to Alta because we really want to see the northern lights!
Q: Right! So, what time of year is best?
Well… the problem is that the aurora strength has nothing to do with time of year, and the weather is totally unpredictable. So really, your chances are equal as long as it’s dark enough. Anytime between the end of September and the beginning of April is just fine.
Q: But this will be a very expensive trip, so we really need to maximize our chances. Just give me an idea of what time of year is best? Read more