Visit MPB Visit MPB Visit MPB

Winter holiday in Northern Norway

Posted 25/09/2016 - 16:18 Link
Good day all,
I`m going to the North of Norway in February and hopefully should have an opportunity to photograph the northern lights.
i`m very much a beginner with a new(ish) K-50 so any help would be gratefully appreciated.

I obviously have a little time to practice but would there be any useful tips (are there any other kind)?, that would assist me with the shots ?

Many thanks
Today is a great day - they always are if you wake up
Posted 26/09/2016 - 09:53 Link
Welcome to the forums and good luck with your K50.

I haven't been to the north of Norway (only the south) but for that type of photography I would make two recommendations. The first is to take a good tripod because you'll need slow shutter speeds. The second is to consider taking an old manual lens or two, simply because you can set them to infinity focus without having to rely on the AF system, which may not work at night with a low contrast scene.
Pentax hybrid user - Digital K3, film 645 and 35mm SLR and Pentax (&other) lenses adapted to Fuji X and Panasonic L digital
Fan of DA limited and old manual lenses
Posted 26/09/2016 - 10:43 Link
There are several excellent tutorials online for photographing the aurora.

You will need a good tripod, a remote (or use the 3second delay), preferably shoot RAW, with a wide angle lens, no filters on the lens, manual lens or not set the camera to manual focus and pre-focus at infinity. Set the ISO to 400 or thereabouts, and either bulb mode or a long exposure setting of up to 60 seconds.

A few charged batteries, kept warm about your person, as the cold will deplete batteries fast, and a couple of memory cards are essential. Also a small torch, perhaps with a red filter on it, (sweet wrapper will do) is useful.
Patience, and experimentation are the next essentials.
Try and find somewhere with some foreground interest too.
Don't be disappointed if the aurora don't look very colourful to the naked eye - they will look better in the photos. Do remember to actually enjoy the show, not spend all your time looking through the camera. the joy of a remote is that you can photograph and enjoy the show. Oh and block the viewfinder -either with the original little cover of a hat or similar. Make sure the rear display is switched off too.
Play about with timings and settings if you can to get what suits you best.

Enjoy your trip and I hope the aurora come out to play for you.
Posted 26/09/2016 - 11:45 Link
Many thanks Both,
This promises to be a trip of a lifetime (unless I make a real pigs ear of it and have to go again).

I`ll take your recommendations and start to get out once the nights get a little darker, and I`ll start looking for the tutorials.

Many thanks
Today is a great day - they always are if you wake up
Posted 26/09/2016 - 11:56 Link
You can also use to help predict if there will be any aurora.
Posted 26/09/2016 - 16:46 Link
You need to contact Bjorn who actually is Norwegian.
Best wishes,


"These places mean something and it's the job of a photographer to figure-out what the hell it is."
Robert Adams
"The camera doesn't make a bit of difference.  All of them can record what you are seeing.  But, you have to SEE."
Ernst Hass
My website:
Posted 26/09/2016 - 19:19 Link
You can learn a lot from Bjørn's (bjolester) photos and EXIF even if you don't contact him.

Add Comment

To leave a comment - Log in to Pentax User or create a new account.