Skip to main content

Northern lights dance across the night sky in northern Ont.


The most powerful geomagnetic storm in the past 20 years impacted Earth on the night of May 10-11, 2024, resulting in vibrant northern lights across Canada, the U.S. and Europe.

A viewer submitted photo of the northern lights over McGregor Bay on Whitefish River First Nation. May 11, 2024. (Supplied/Evelyn Diebel)

This particular storm was so severe that the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) declared it a G4, the second highest level given to solar storms, the last of which took place in 2005, according to CTV News.

The dancing of lights in the night sky is caused by an explosion of material from the sun often called the aurora borealis. The charged particles then hit Earth's magnetic field and interact with the atmosphere, resulting in a dazzling light show.

Some in northern Ontario who missed Friday’s light show were able to see the aurora borealis on Saturday and there may still be hope for more sightings in the coming days, weather permitting, according to NOAA.

“The great news is the sun is still burping this stuff out,” Science Specialist Dan Riskin said in an interview with CP24.

"So we should get a similar show."

Riskin told CP24 that it can be difficult to know when and where the auroras will fill up the night sky, but in Ontario between 11 p.m. and 5 a.m. is usually prime time for viewing.

Cloudy skies and light pollution can impact viewing, so the northern lights are best seen in clear skies and away from major sources of light, such as large cities.

Click the link above for some highlights of the views in northern Ontario.

Got a photo you'd like to share? Please send us an email at

-- With files from web writer Ashley Hyshka and CTV News Toronto's Hannah Alberga & Abby O'Brien Top Stories

Stay Connected