The northern lights were spotted over the city of Fredrikstad as well as the island of Hvaler on Sunday. A number of pictures of the phenomenon, also known as the aurora borealis, were taken in both places following their appearances in the evening skies on Sunday.
— Geir Hermansen (@geirhermansen) December 20, 2015
“I’ve never seen anything like it on Hvaler before,” said local resident Elise Olsen, who sent pictures of the phenomenon to the Fredrikstad Blad newspaper.
The lights were also spotted over the southeasterly Østfold region last Christmas, according to Fredrikstad Blad.
“It’s a rare phenomenon so far south, but if you’re lucky then you can capture the northern lights over Fredrikstad and Østfold,” Nina Larsgård from the Norwegian Institute of Meteorology told the newspaper.
Pål Brekke of the Norwegian Space Center told the newspaper that open areas in the sun’s outer atmosphere, the corona, coupled with strong solar winds, can push sightings of the lights further south than normal.
In October, photographer Harald Albrigtsen captured a video of whales playing under the northern lights off Norway’s coast.