Seeing the Northern Lights
When we went to Ruka in Finland a couple of weeks ago we knew there was a chance that we might see the Northern Lights.
The Aurora Borealis is a natural light display in the sky particularly in Arctic and Antarctic regions, caused by the collision of energetic charged particles with atoms in the thermosphere. Named after the Roman goddess of dawn, Aurora, and the Greek name for the north wind, Boreas, by Pierre Gassendi, Auroras seen near the magnetic pole may be high overhead, but from farther away, they illuminate the northern horizon as a greenish glow or sometimes a faint red, as if the Sun were rising from an unusual direction. (Thanks Wikipedia for the help with the definition!)
They are considered quite a sight, and are featured on many bucket lists (including my own!) – they are a sight to behold.
Ruka sits just below the Arctic Circle and the Northern Lights are visible from there on occasion. The photo above is borrowed from Ruka.fi website and looks across Ruka village from the top of the surrounding hills. Sadly, the conditions weren’t quite right for us and they were not visible from where we were. Not even on Wednesday evening when we took some snowmobiles out on a bit of a safari into the Finnish wilderness.
We didn’t go to Ruka to see the Northern Lights, we went for a winter holiday, but it would have been a nice bonus. We knew there was only a chance but we also knew that it would probably be our best chance. Now, of course, we want to create a new chance. I think we’ve pretty much decided to go back to Ruka for more winter skiing fun sometime, including venturing a bit further away on snow mobiles into the forests.
But what about this? A friend sent me the link to Hotel Kakslauttanen and it just looks amazing. And now I want to sleep in a glass igloo!
The site says:
Glass igloo provides an one of a kind opportunity to admire the northern lights and millions of stars of the crystal clear Lapp sky in a comfortable room temperature. Based on a groundbreaking idea and years of research and development, glass igloos are a marvel of modern technology. Built from a special thermal glass the temperature inside the igloo always stays at a normal level. It also prevents the glass from not getting white frosted, hence keeping the view clear even when the temperature outside drops to under -30°C. Every igloo is equipped with a toilet and luxury beds. On every evening a hot sauna and a refreshing ice hole are waiting for you.
Wow. What an experience that would be. I love the idea of relaxing in a warm bed, looking up at the sky through the glass igloo like ceiling, taking in the wonder of nature. All those stars, and that beautiful green tint. Can you imagine?
They have snow igloos and log cabins too, and run excursions and activities of course, but I think the glass igloo would be the most spectacular place to sleep. Maybe on the planet. I am definitely adding this to my list!
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