Oh well, maybe next time. 2/15/16

Another one of "those" aurora chasing nights.  All the forecasts looked great for a strong show, my aurora alert apps were going off telling me it was going to be awesome in 4hrs., it was clear in Anchorage and the forecast looked great in Palmer, so I decided to head up to Hatcher Pass, which is one of my favorite places to shoot the Aurora.  It takes a bit over an hour to get there.  I left the house at 9pm, got to the top parking lot above Hatcher Pass Lodge just after 10:15 and waited for the big show.  And waited, and waited.  And watched the haze slowly build to the north where the brilliant aurora would first show itself.  And waited...

Half-moon lighting the mountains above Hatcher Pass.

There was a beautiful half-moon to the south lighting up the surrounding mountains, so I shot that just to have something for the effort.  Finally, around 1am, there was a hint of color behind the mountains to the north.  Shot a couple of frames, but it never got any stronger--just barely visible to the naked eye.  It's always amazing to me how much more color the camera sees than the eye does.  And that was it.  It never got any stronger, the haze kept building until it completely blocked out the stars and I gave up and headed back to Anchorage at 3am.  I'm willing to bet that Murphy's Law of Aurora Photography kicked in and the lights came out 15 minutes after I packed up and hit the road ;)

Finally, a brief hint of color.

And you can bet I'll be out again tonight if the alerts go off and the sky is clear.  That's just how it goes.

This is as strong as it ever got while I was there.