Nordic nights and northern lights: Tromsø harbour 29/10/2015

The last night of my brief time in Norway was very clear and cold.  I spent a lot of it on the pier that runs right out into Tromsø harbour.  It was an ideal spot for night photography as it wasn’t too icy (so there was little chance of falling into the frigid ocean!) and it was some distance from the brightest lights.

The full moon is just rising over the brow of the mountain in this picture.  The sailing vessel makes a lovely composition with nice reflections in the water and a black sky.  I took it at 6:45pm – three hours after sunset …

Tromsø harbour 1

Tromsø harbour 1

After an hour or so of taking pictures I was cold and hungry so I went into town for some supper.  By the time I returned to the harbour it was 10pm and the northern lights were rippling and weaving from one horizon to the other.   It was also a lot colder but that was easily ignored.  This second picture is taken at almost the same place as the first.   The moon’s now over my right shoulder lighting the scene.

Tromsø harbour 2

Tromsø harbour 2

I’ve used my Olympus camera’s live composition function for the next picture.  I set it up to take a 1 second exposure every second for 10 minutes – that’s 600 exposures.  The great thing is that you can watch them added live on the camera’s screen. It’s fascinating to see the star trails grow.  The bridge joining the city to the mainland is reflected really nicely in the ocean and there are lots of green flashes of the northern lights as they rippled above the horizon.

Tromsø harbour 3

Tromsø harbour 3

The last picture was taken at 11:15 after a very memorable night but the northern lights were fading and I was cold.  It was time to get back to my warm room and enjoy a hot coffee.

Tromsø harbour 4

Tromsø harbour 4

 

 

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