Clachtoll,the northern lights, stars and Steve

Stoer Bay Chalets at Clachtoll has at times the most spectacular night sky. Last Saturday we saw a sky that seemed so heavy with stars that it looked like it might burst. All the stars in the sky seemed to reflect as clear as day into Clachtolls own little loch in front of the chalets.
An even more stunning nights sky was to follow on the Sunday night. Starting from almost twilight well into the night, the Northern lights or Aurora Borealis played in the sky showing all a truly breathtaking display of light and colour.
A  new phenomenon also showed himself on Sunday night too.This Phenomenon has been named “Steve” and is described by NASA as a narrow arc of light which aligns east – west and may extend hundreds or thousands of miles emitting light in purple hues during an Aurora Borealis. Steve’s more correct title is a Strong Thermal Emission Velocity Enhancement. Astronomers are trying to better understand the phenomenon, and NASA is funding a citizen science project seeking sighting.
Though it is impossible to predict when a show of the northern lights will ever appear the most likely times to see them are said to be March, April, September and October, when the nights are more likely to be cold and clear.
Out of pure curiosity, I decided to find the meanings of the words Aurora Borealis. Here is what I found. Aurora is the Roman god of the dawn and Borealis is the Greek name for the north wind. Another completely useless piece of information is that the name Steve is in homage to the 2006 children’s film Over the hedge, where the characters gave the name to creature they had not ever seen before.
As the week draws to an end I have a feeling the night sky maybe a little more overcast. With showers forecast any sightings of stars, Auroa borealis or Steve may be extremely unlikely….but hey there’s always more nights to come.

Posted in Uncategorised.