We know it’s a weeknight, but hear us out. It’s the best one yet to get outdoors and put on your stargazer’s hat. As the skies break clear, a treat is in order as you can see the Northern Lights over Washington today and tomorrow.
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Space Weather Prediction Center has issued a magnetic storm watch for 24 hours. This usually wreaks havoc on navigation equipment and radio waves.
But a fun side effect of that is, we get to see the ethereal dance of the Aurora Borealis from Washington towns.
Make sure to clear your schedules, and look up tonight because the lights are supposed to be at their peak, according to the University of Alaska-Fairbanks Geophysical Institute.
Although the Aurora watch starts at 4 p.m. PST on Wednesday, November 20, it's supposed to peak between 9 p.m. tonight and 3 a.m. on November 21.
Your best shot at seeing the Auroral activity is in the darkest of places.
So get out of the city where there's minimal light pollution. According to the Aurora Borealis Washington State, a Facebook group for aurora borealis enthusiasts and aurora chasers in Washington State, "anywhere that has a dark open view to the north/northeast" is recommended.
"This can be on a lake, in the mountains, on a beach in Puget Sound, on the top of a plateau or ridge," says the group. Mukilteo, Anacortes, Snoqualmie Pass, Edmonds, Mt.Baker, Whidbey Island, Greenlake and Alki Beach are all top favorites of Aurora chasers in the Evergreen State.
If you can't, don't fret. According to the Institute, weather permitting, it could also be visible low on the horizon from Seattle and Des Moines.
Weather gods need to bless us with good weather for us to have the best shot at seeing this spectacle. So, here's praying for clear skies!
Editor's note: The cover image is for illustrative purposes only.