May 28, 2017 6:17 pm
Updated: May 29, 2017 9:15 pm

PHOTOS: Northern Lights make rare appearance in Metro Vancouver skies

The Northern Lights made an appearance in Metro Vancouver.

Tristan Todd/Instagram
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The Northern Lights made a rare appearance in Metro Vancouver skies over the weekend.

The aurora borealis is more common in northern parts of the province, but clear skies and a huge solar storm made for some spectacular night skies on B.C.’s south coast Saturday night and early Sunday morning.

SFU physicist Howard Trottier told Global BC’s sister station CKNW that the lights were a result of a “coronal mass ejection, which is a tremendous burst of material shot out from the sun – think of Grouse Mountain being blasted out into space.

“So when the particles hit Earth’s magnetic field, they spiral in toward the poles, along the way, they excite atoms in the atmosphere, and then those atoms then emit colour, typically green, sometimes red.”

Many across the region captured images of the lights, including photographer Tristan Todd who shot a time-lapse video at Vancouver International Airport.

The lights were also visible in Whistler and parts of central B.C. and as far north as Prince George. They were also spotted in Alberta, parts of the U.S. and Europe.

The view from Okanagan Beach in Penticton.

Carlos LeGuerrier

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