8 x 10 Double-matted card with custom accent cutout
Photograph by Carl Johnson
The “auroral oval” or “belt” is a region in the circumpolar north that hovers around the magnetic north pole. Here, the aurora borealis, also called the northern lights, can be seen approximately two-thirds of the year. This region reaches all eight circumpolar countries. In the U.S., Alaska is the only state under the auroral oval. While chances of seeing the aurora are statistically much greater in this region, during large geomagnetic storms, the aurora oval expands and the northern lights can be seen in more southerly latitudes.