How to see the Northern Lights in Iceland

something just like visceral inside of

you happens when you season argillite

grab the camera

ah I was just like running around the

car and dancing and screaming like a

crazy person


hi team Iceland I want to talk to you

about my favorite topic was the drummer

all during a drum roll to Northern



this week Wednesday I was about to go to

bed and I just thought oh look outside

just see what I could see and you know

what those are the lights they were

there and it was the first sighting of

the year I mean it happens to me when

the Northern Lights come out and I just

like can't control my body I freaked out

I'm excited am i jumping around and

screaming and I'm you know like a child

at Christmas I can't explain it

if you season are the lights and you

know what I mean but if you have yet to

see them then you will soon see well

it's just my favorite time of year I

love Northern Lights season so if you're

coming to Iceland soon the good news is

is they are back they are out and

they're here to stay I want to talk

today about how you can see them in

Iceland and how you can take good photos

of them because I know that's a big

reason why people are coming to Iceland

right now it's a tall September and

October are classically the best times

in the fall to see the Northern Lights

and then again in March and April so if

you're coming to the next couple of


be ready there's kind of three factors

that I keep in mind when they're trying

to just see the Northern Lights in

general the first thing is that there

has to be a solar flare from the Sun the

Sun you know releases this energy and it

comes towards Earth and earth breaks it

apart and then it folds on the poles and

then that's how there's like a ring

around the earth that's where you can

see the Northern Lights so in order for

there to be aurora at all the sun had to

have let go of this solar flare within

the last couple of days rule number two

is cloud cover so there can be aurora

above the clouds but if there's high

cloud cover you're just not going to see

them so and this is obviously a big

factor in iceland so the weather in

Iceland is you know just so up and down

and you just never know number three is

light pollution

so why pollution obviously comes from

cities buildings cars houses all of that

kind of stuff

so a lot of people fear staying in


you will have a harder time seeing the

lights they can be seen it's just way

easier and way more common to see them

out you know like in the country and

away from that light pollution so the

first website that I used to check is

called geophysical Institute and you can

check basically how active you are will

be for that particular evening so

anything that's basically above a 2 so

you're thinking 3 or above will be a

pretty good likelihood of seeing the

nards lights at evening here you can see

that the ring goes right through Iceland

so I know that tonight

vor will be active so that is a good

sign to start off with the second

website that I like to check is called

Vader is and this is the local Icelandic

weather station so they do a really good

job of showing me what the cloud cover

will be like in the entire country so

basically the white is no clouds and the

green is a lot of clouds you go down and

right here there's a bar where you can

drag in the next couple of days how the

cloud cover will be so right now this is

where we're at and if I drag towards

here then you can see the clouds rolling

in so for example if you're going to be

in week in South Iceland tomorrow night

and Wednesday then you're going to drag

that cursor over and see ok well looks

pretty clear for Wednesday night and

into Thursday night as well so you can

just really start to see what the cloud

cover is looking like so this is really

really helpful to look at website number

3 that I checked is called soft-serve

News so for example say at this point

you know that the roar is going to be

high and active there's very little

clouds for where you're going to be all

systems are go it's looking really

really good

then you're going to want to check

soft-serve news because what I love so

much about this website is they break it

down into increments basically of how

active the aurora will be in the next

in 22 37 52 minutes how amazing is this

I love that so if I'm going outside and

I'm going to look for the aura and it's

going to be a hunting night then I know

in 52 minutes I need to be outside

because that's when they're going to be

very active so this is so nice to just

check for the activity level within this

time frame photographing the Northern

Lights can be difficult if you don't

know how to do it I mean what are the

norms in life if you can't prove that

you saw them with a photo right right I

think in general the better capabilities

your camera has as far as you know being

able to manually control the settings

the better luck you're going to have

number one super important you guys need

it you need to have a tripod of some

sort this is really important because

you want to minimize any movement that

you have around your camera while you're

taking the photo

my second favorite piece of equipment is

a shutter release which allows you to

just press so that the camera focuses

and then it takes the shot that they're

really inexpensive I think I got our

Shore like $20 off of Amazon so oh the

settings on your camera so you're going

to want to first of all have a really

long exposure so with the Northern


it's a dark out obviously so your camera

doesn't have something like to pull the

light in especially if your waist like

out on the country and you don't have a

light source so you want to set your

camera to have a long exposure usually

ours as we like to do between 20 to 30

seconds for the exposure so it's

basically during that time frame it's

pulling as much light in it as I can so

it's pulling the colors of the aura and

then the other thing that you're going

to want to manually change is the ISO so

kind of a good rule of thumb for that is

I usually set it around 800 this is very

dependent on again how much light you

have around you so for example if you

are if if we're shooting them from our

apartment or if you're in the city then

I then I can stick around that 800 but

were further out in the country where

there isn't a lot of light around

we actually do bump that number up to

almost you know like a thousand or 1200

because that is basically the amount of

light that it's pulling in just kind of

play around with it it's going to vary

based on where you are and what you're

doing and everything like that just two

good rules of thumb longer exposure

higher ISO

if you are in Reykjavik during your

state there are a couple of cool places

that you can go in order to see them in

the city

the lighthouse down by the harbor is a

really good area because it kind of

blocks us some of that light pollution

and then if you're really willing then

you can drive outside of the city last

thing I want to talk about is just

taking the Northern Lights tours so

obviously they offer tons of tours here

will take you out in to the middle of

the wilderness or on the glacier and you

know basically anything you could want I

think I sound like a boat tour as well

so there's lots of tours so if you're

not comfortable navigating the roads at

night by yourself or you know maybe

you're staying right sipping you don't

have a car there's tours that go out all

the time so you're if you want scenar on

life you will and you can I've never

taken a tour for the other night but one

thing that I've heard is that if you're

signed up for one night to see them and

you know the visibility is low or

whatever they will cancel the tour

they'll roll over your tours to the next

night and they'll just basically keep

trying until you'll get to see them so

yeah so that's what I have for today and

hopefully you learned a lot let me know

in the comments please let me know in

the comments if you guys think that

these videos are helpful have a great

weekend and happy I hope