Wow, Just Wow! (8 October 2015)

I got home from work at about 8.30pm last night.  Checking Facebook, as you do, I saw a photo that someone had posted of the Aurora Borealis at Loch Lomond.  Of course  Eileen, being a good wife had my tea almost ready & the kids were in their pyjamas ready to go to bed.  When I suggested that we should take a run out to have a look after the lovely chicken dinner,  (Eileen does sometimes read this) I half expected there to be several hundred obvious reasons that I had overlooked which would make this the most stupid idea I’d ever come up with,  (I’ve got form apparently according to Eileen.)  but no, she agreed and we bundled the kids and blankets into the car.

Heading for Loch Lomond my eyes were on stalks looking from the road to the sky & back again.  I couldn’t help noticing the slightly bemused look on Eileen’s face.  I’d never noticed before how when she’s as excited about heading out on an adventure as I am that she wears a bemused look.  Anyway we saw nothing in the sky at all until almost in Balloch when I saw a green glow looming ahead.  “Is that it?” I asked, only to realise almost immediately that it was a streetlight shining onto the leaves of a tree.

Only moments later though, the glowing patches becoming visible in the sky were definitely the Aurora.  Of course at this point we’re in a built up area with lots of streetlights, but we keep getting tantalising glimpes of the sky being illuminated as if by moving searchlights.

 On leaving Balloch we’re out into the darkness and the light display is even more clearly visible in between trees & hedges & twists & turns in the road.  I’m now looking for somewhere safe to pull over and turn off the lights so that we can really appreciate the spectacle, but there’s nothing until we reach Gartocharn where we turn off down a side road and find a spot with a good view of the northern horizon.

The Aurora forms an arc like a shallow rainbow, and the lights dance and shimmer mainly green but with a few areas of pink along the arc with occasional shafts shooting up vertically.  At this point I can’t believe that we actually made it, and we’re witnessing a spectacular Aurora.  I set up the camera and this is the result…

After a while the intensity of the lights reduced and we decided to try to find another location with a different view.  I had in mind the view across Loch Lomond from Rowardennan so that was where we stopped next.

The Aurora wasn’t quite as vibrant here but I did like the view across the loch towards Ben Lomond.  I was surprised that there was noone else taking pictures there, but on the way home we stopped off at Duck Bay and the place was mobbed with photographers.  

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