northern lights

Northern Lights Could Be Seen in Illinois, Wisconsin This Weekend

Take a look outside


Some Midwest residents could have the chance to see the Aurora Borealis, or Northern Lights, Saturday night.

According to the University of Alaska Fairbanks, auroral activity will be high this weekend from Portland, Oregon, to New York with the Northern Lights visible low on the horizon as far south as central Illinois.

The Northern Lights will likely be seen further south than usual as the result of a geomagnetic storm caused by a recent solar flare.

The best time to see the Lights in southern Wisconsin will be at approximately 7 p.m., just after dark.

However, clouds may prevent a clear sighting, according to the National Weather Service in Milwaukee.

The strongest activity is expected from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. Saturday, and moderate activity will likely occur between 7 p.m. Saturday and 1 a.m. Sunday.

Forecasters say lights from major cities can impact how much you can see, so it's best to be in an area of complete darkness.

The Space Weather Prediction Center previously explained that during a major geomagnetic storm, the southern and northern aurora ovals expand away from the poles so the aurora can be seen over the United States.

"For many people, the aurora is a beautiful nighttime phenomenon that is worth traveling to Arctic regions just to observe. It is the only way for most people to actually experience space weather," the Space Weather Prediction Center said.

To track the Aurora Borealis, click here.

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