Aurora Viewing in Southcentral Alaska

Though Fairbanks is often assumed to be the only northern lights (aurora borealis) viewing location in Alaska, there are some distinct advantages to chasing the lights in and around Anchorage and Southcentral Alaska. This Anchorage northern lights forecast page is designed to provide you information to aid in your search for a northern lights experience during a visit in the Anchorage area. Join us on our Anchorage Aurora Quest for a guided experience, showing you the best viewing locations and providing instruction on how to photograph this amazing phenomena.

Aurora and Weather Forecasts

3-Day Aurora Forecast

The aurora forecast is updated for April 24. Keep an eye out for our daily weather forecast update below and tour status as noted on the Anchorage Aurora Quest page. The Kp estimate is for the maximum levels forecasted for the time between 11:00 p.m. and 4:00 a.m. Alaska time. 

WED AUG 17  – Planetary K-Index [predicted]: 


Additional Information Affecting Aurora Viewing



Solar Winds:

Geomagnetic Field:

Planetary K-Index provides an estimate as to how wide the auroral oval may extend. It does not indicate whether the aurora borealis will appear. The most important factors for aurora viewing are the solar winds and geomagnetic field – so note the information above on those. The Planetary K-Index is measured on a scale of 0-9. Anchorage is within the Kp3 zone (aurora visible overhead), but auroras are often seen here on the horizon as low as Kp1 (except for the early and late season, where a higher Kp is needed.) A fairly accurate Kp index can be determined up to 3-days in advance. For the Kp index indicated in the Anchorage northern lights forecast, that is the maximum Kp predicted during the prime aurora viewing time in the Anchorage area (generally between 9:00 p.m. and 4:00 a.m.). We do not provide the Kp level for a forecast period outside of nominal viewing times (i.e., local daytime).

Last Night’s Aurora

  • The maximum level for the Planetary K-Index was a Kp__ at prime viewing time for Southcentral Alaska.
  • The maximum hemispheric power reached during Alaska viewing hours was ___ GW at ___.
  • Solar wind ….
  • The geomagnetic field …

Current Aurora Ovation

Aurora Ovation

Hemispheric Power is a measure of auroral activity that helps determine how bright and active auroras might be. It measures the rate of deposition of charged particles (mainly electrons and protons) into the atmosphere, where they collide with upper atmosphere particles and eventually stop. This process transfers their kinetic energy to the upper atmosphere. The higher the number, the more charged particles are depositing in the upper atmosphere. It’s measured on a scale of 5-150 GW [Gigawatts]. A power level of 20 or more is usually adequate to produce auroras visible to the naked eye. Hemispheric Power fluctuates and is a short range forecast that can be determined only up to around 30-90 minutes in advance with relative accuracy.

Tonight's Weather Forecasts

The forecast is updated for the night of August __.


[Forecast] Estimated cloud cover is __% (11:00 p.m.) to __% (4:00 a.m.).


[Forecast] Estimated cloud cover is __% (11:00 p.m.) to __% (4:00 a.m.).

Butte/Knik River

[Forecast] Estimated cloud cover is __% (11:00 p.m.) to __% (4:00 a.m.).


[Forecast] Estimated cloud cover is __% (11:00 p.m.) to __% (4:00 a.m.).


[Forecast] Estimated cloud cover is __% (11:00 p.m.) to __% (4:00 a.m.).


[Forecast] Estimated cloud cover is __% (11:00 p.m.) to __% (4:00 a.m.).

Glacier View

[Forecast] Estimated cloud cover is __% (11:00 p.m.) to __% (4:00 a.m.).


[Forecast] Estimated cloud cover is __% (11:00 p.m.) to __% (4:00 a.m.).


[Forecast] Estimated cloud cover is __% (11:00 p.m.) to __% (4:00 a.m.).


[Forecast] Estimated cloud cover is __% (11:00 p.m.) to __% (4:00 a.m.).
Latest Satellite Infrared Image of Alaska Cloud Cover

Anchorage Aurora Season 2020-2021 Statistics

Anchorage Aurora Season Statistics

Late summer aurora borealis corona display over Anchorage.