Posted by: Stefan Anderson | September 9, 2015

Labor Day Auroral Splendor

Greetings from Conserve School,

15-08-07 Northern Lights Anderson 07This past Monday evening Conserve School students and staff were fortunate to again witness an impressive display of Northern Lights. For me the evening began as it often does with a quick after dinner check of the website to see if anything interesting was occurring. I was excited to see that the planetary K-index was at auroral storm level Kp=6. However, the sun was just setting so there was no guarantee that it would remain at storm level by the time it would be dark enough to view Northern Lights. I gathered my camera, tripod and faithful dog Copper and headed out to the Conserve School sledding hill to await sunset and the hopeful rise of the Northern Lights.

Rennicke4At 8:30, just after sunset I began to see the glimmer of auroral activity. At that time Conserve School students were busy doing homework at their evening study hours locations in the dorms and the main academic building. By 9:00 it was clear to me that the building auroral display was of a magnificence that the students should not miss. I quickly informed the staff that study hours were canceled and that students should be encouraged to join me on the sledding hill. What followed was a delightful hour of star and Northern Lights gazing until clouds moved in to close the show. The soundtrack for the heavenly display was provided by soft guitar and singing punctuated with the clicks and beeps of cameras busily working to capture the aurora.

I hope you enjoy the photos from this memorable Labor Day evening that were captured by students and staff.

Oh, it was wild and weird and wan, and ever in camp o’ nights
We would watch and watch the silver dance of the mystic Northern Lights.
And soft they danced from the Polar sky and swept in primrose haze;
And swift they pranced with their silver feet, and pierced with a blinding blaze.
They danced a cotillion in the sky; they were rose and silver shod;
It was not good for the eyes of man — ‘Twas a sight for the eyes of God.
~Robert Service, “The Ballad of the Northern Lights”


Stefan Anderson
Head of School

Conserve School provides a semester-long immersion for high school students in environmental studies and outdoor activities that deepens their love of nature, reinforces their commitment to conservation, and equips them to take meaningful action as environmental stewards. Thanks to the generosity of Conserve School’s friends and its founder James Lowenstine all accepted students receive significant scholarship support.


  1. Impressive to say the least

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