Chasing Northern Lights: A Q&A with Alex Broadstock

When photographer Alex Broadstock arrived in Norway, he stepped off the plane wearing Teva sandals and shorts. Faced with the blisteringly cold Nordic weather, his friends thought he was crazy.

But after a series of missed flights and diversions the previous week during his return from Costa Rica, where he’d been leading a backpacking trip, it was either venture to the arctic with inappropriate attire or don’t go at all. He simply couldn’t imagine the latter.

Alex, alongside the other members of his storytelling team, the Travel Creatives, had ventured to Norway to witness the massive fjords and sheer cliffs of the icy country, but also to check a certain experience off of his bucket list — one that even the most seasoned of travelers have difficulty accomplishing. He was hoping to catch the evasive glimmers of the Aurora Borealis.

Due to the scarcity of daylight that plagues Scandinavian countries, the Travel Creatives battled against the four hours of sunset glow a day, fretting over detailed plans and schedules, video shoots in the dwindling light, and the slow, arduous work of filming in snow gloves. Fortunately, they found that the golden glow during those few hours appeared absolutely gorgeous — in fact, it was some of the best sunset light they had ever worked with.

Between moments spent freezing in the fading sunlight and breathlessly waiting for a sign of the Northern Lights amid cloudy skies, Alex remembers snowmobile jaunts through the frozen tundra and warm dinners comprised of traditional reindeer stew at his close friend’s house — memories he’ll hold dear forever.

And, after night after night of disappointment, the group finally caught a glimpse of the mesmerizing hues that dance across the Nordic skies.

Alex hopes that the video evokes the same physical reaction he experienced when seeing the Northern Lights for the first time, that it inspires others to realize that trips like these aren’t only for “experienced” mountaineers. He believes that with a bit of timing and planning, anyone can experience the thrill of checking such a feat off their bucket list.

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Camille Danielich
Camille is a writer, traveler, and visual storyteller from New Jersey. She has lived in the Czech Republic, Thailand and in New York. She's always looking forward to her next adventure and probably won't stop instagramming her food anytime soon. Follow along on instagram