Churchill, Canada is well known as the polar bear capital of the world, but it also lays claim to being the northern lights capital. The community certainly has strong grounds to make that claim. The northern lights, or aurora, are indeed active and spectacular in the cold, clear skies of winter. The dazzling displays can be seen for about nine months of the year from September through May, the darker the sky the better. The best time to watch is when no moon is shining above.
What causes these mysterious swirls? The spiraling, vivid bands of greens and white that fill the sky with wonder: What are they exactly?