DIY light pillar

Tonight we will create our own light pillar at the middle of the lake (we got the stuff in the local shop in Kilpisjärvi). The lake is flat and we will most likely not be disturbed by cars or village lights.

A 20 minutes snowmobile drive later we are on the lake, install our LED floodlight and pose for the camera. Then we switch it on and off and take images from different spots.




Again we have to kneel down - this time all four (Franz, Joonatan, Konstantin and I)....Joonatan is making jokes at some stage as we all kneel down in a circle "We praise the ancient gods of mount Saana". It must look really like a strange ritual.....

Finally, Joonatan tells the legend oft Lake Kilpisjärvi and the landscape in the region - a legend about the giants Malla and Saana. In the end Saana (the bride) formed the lake from her tears. Read the story here.

It is very awesome listening to the tale while kneeling down in front of our Canon camera....and while Joonatans story continues a dim aurora  appears above us like a sign from above.
Panorama from all-sky image processed with Sky Quality camera software
We almost freeze our toes again. Back on the main land Franz and I hit the road to do more measurements.
Dim aurora vs. Milky way
In the end the aurora picks up and rewards our patience with a nice northern light show.

Aurora wins...
Back at the station we go to sauna a last time and get a lesson in history of Finland from Joonatan...its about being occupied for centuries by Sweden and then Russian empire, being released by the communists in 1917, attacked by the Soviets then allying with Nazis in WWII before changing sides to ally with Soviets against Nazis lateron....the Nazis were not amused by the latter and destroyed the most of Lapland leaving only "scorched earth".

Tonight we have 1 Finn telling the story, 2 Germans (1 from East, 1 from West) and 3 former soviets (2 Russians from Irkutsk and 1 Kasach living in Berlin) listening. We all work peaceful together and are happy about that situation.....

After sauna we have a farewell drink and late dinner in the kitchen - discussing history rather than science. Na sdarowje!

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