Oh Southern Lights where forth art thou? Come out and show thy pretty shades of purple and green. Glow and radiate and beam. Show thyself to me.
I’ve become an avid Aurora Australis chaser. Living out in the wilds of Tasmania under The Great Western Tiers at 41°South, way beyond the town and city lights; I live in a prime spot to view this reclusive radiant gleams and glow of light. The Aurora Australis is the Southern Hemisphere’s answer to the Aurora Borealis.
Did you know that there is an Aurora Service on the internet? There is. From this I’ve learnt about the Kp index which measures the solar flares and winds and complicated things like that. What I understand, for a simple soul like me, is that if the Kp is around 4 or more I’m likely to see some sort of Aurora action. The maximum Kp is 9. The Aurora Australis being visible also depends on how waxed or waned the moon is and what the cloud cover is doing.
Still with me?
Since becoming a devoted follower of this Glittery Lady of the Night I’ve managed to see her emerge, but dimly, on two occasions (both times the Kp has been 4). She shows a beautiful glow just above Mother Cummings Peak. Tonight is one such time. There she is. I can’t show you a photograph because I’ve taken none. A phone camera doesn’t cut it. What I have in my memory is a beautiful celestial glow. A silhouette of mountains, beams of light that flicker and move, a softness and loveliness in the blackest ink of night. With the most glorious, most milky of Milky Ways twinkling in the foreground. So vast. So huge. So how small am I. It’s below freezing but I could easily lie out in the paddock and drink it all in for hours.
This place we call home has its challenges but this magnificent sight makes those challenges melt away. Come on Old Girl, make that Kp index 6 or 7 and really show me your stuff! I live in watchful hope.
Sunday, yesterday, was our longest run before Adelaide Marathon. 32kms. We set off from the farm, down muddy lanes, through the easement that lies between Paul’s farm and the next and out onto country roads that only the locals use. Around Caveside, Needles, Dairy Plains, Western Creek, Red Hills, Cheshunt and Montana we ran. We live on the doorstep of beautiful country; the perfect place to run.
We’re going on a long run, it’s going to be a slow one. We’re not scared. Squelchy squelchy mud. We can’t go over it. We can’t go under it. We’ll have to go through it!
A lovely mud pack for our Brooks running shoes. Tiffany’s blue looks most becoming with pooy mud I think.
Yesterday by day rainbows and snow clouds. By night the Aurora Australis.
Finally going down the driveway to the farmhouse and there are the three new Jersey Bulls. Huey, Dewey and Louie. They have attitude those three!
And there we are. Two old runners with Mother Cummings Peak in the background. We can look at this Peak from the farm house. We can see the Southern Lights over it by night AND we can run a wonderful course and take in views of The Great Western Tiers and see the Peak from different perspectives along the way.
Life is better in running shoes.
Happy running 🙂
PS This weekend is Run Melbourne AND Blondie Daughter #1’s Engagement Party the night before AND I’m taking my aged parents (hello Mum and Dad) over Bass Strait for the occasion. I’m taking my Dad to the football too. Wish me luck!