SACKETS HARBOR, N.Y. (WWTI) — The auroras were out in the North Country late Thursday night into Friday morning. The aurora borealis, commonly known as the Northern Lights are known as colorful “dancing lights” that sometimes show up in the sky. However, they are rare to see in Northern New York.
According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, an aurora is formed when the sun emits electrically-charged particles called ions, which move away from the sun in a stream of plasma, known as solar winds. When the plasma comes in contact with the Earth’s magnetic field, the ions are typically agitated and some ions become trapped in the atmosphere. This causes the ions to glow and subsequently form what is considered a “geometric storm.” This is when the northern lights can be seen. Although uncommon to see in New York, NOAA data confirmed that a massive geometric storm moved across the higher latitudes of the Northern Hemisphere on March 23.
These conditions allowed for the auroras to be viewed across most of Canada and the northern United States. This included displays in Jefferson County, New York along Lake Ontario. View photos below: