Last night, the aurora did make an appearance though it laid low for most of the evening. I watched a greenish arc expand, fade, sink and rise with a rhythm so slow, it could lull a baby to sleep. Then all at once around 12:30 a.m. this morning, the smooth bow splintered into a host of parallel rays like a host of celestial geysers sprouting from the horizon. It wasn’t brilliant or particularly high (about 25° altitude max), but their narrow tops for a while mimicked the the pointed spruces in the distance and made a beautiful sight.
Today I’m a little bleary-eyed but not too tired to tell you that the aurora’s on again tonight (Monday Oct. 24) with a G1 or minor geomagnetic storm in the forecast. G1 means that skywatchers in the northern half of states such as Minnesota, Wisconsin, North Dakota and Michigan may see an arc and possibly some plumes of green in the lower half of the northern sky.
We have better news for Tuesday night when a G2 or moderate storm is expected. That should bring the aurora into view into the Midwest if the forecast holds true. We’ll just have to see. Best times for both nights is from end of evening twilight until around 1 a.m. Central Time.