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Host Sharon

Photos from Oriana Northern Lights Cruise X406

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Hi thankyou for posting your photos ,what a fabulous cruise you had and sooo lucky to see the Northern Lights.I believe it was a good year this year but they are terrific.The ship looks surreal with the snow and especially the palm trees.

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What a wonderful set of photos, really superb! I so wanted to go on this trip, but my hubbie wasn't keen. So wish I had!!

 

Thanks - perhaps you can persuade him for next year?

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Your photos and information with them is really excellent - thank you so much.

 

We are looking at a similar cruise next year, but are a bit torn between going on Oriana which is a bigger ship, so will hopefully be more stable in bad weather, (which seems common up there at this time of year), or whether to go for a smaller ship (e.g. Marco Polo, Boudicca or Voyager) which have a more interesting itineraries, with ports along the coast of Norway and some scenic cruising on the inside passage.

 

I suspect you where up there fairly near the full moon, was it a problem when looking at the Northern lights, (we are thinking it would be best avoided)? Also, can I be cheeky and ask what type of camera you had - was it a fairly simple one or did you have an SLR - perhaps with a tripod?

 

Sorry to bombard you with questions.

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You would need a DSLR and definitely a tripod to take better or of any of the Northern Lights. A compact camera unless very expensive hasnt got the settings you would need to take successful pictures.

Edited by shilly3191

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looks excellent thanks

 

We are considering something like this in November 2015 for my half century

 

 

giving me seconds thoughts now when i see HOW cold it looks

 

I was thinking yeah a little cool not completely snow covered decks :)

 

what time of year was this?

 

And i would also be interested in which type of camera you used

 

I don't agree that you couldn't get good pictures without a DSLR but it would certainly make them much more achievable :)

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looks excellent thanks

 

We are considering something like this in November 2015 for my half century

 

 

giving me seconds thoughts now when i see HOW cold it looks

 

I was thinking yeah a little cool not completely snow covered decks :)

 

what time of year was this?

 

And i would also be interested in which type of camera you used

 

I don't agree that you couldn't get good pictures without a DSLR but it would certainly make them much more achievable :)

 

This was mid March. It was very cold - around -5-11 during the day and -28C where I took the Northern Lights. But, with the right clothes I was toasty warm.

 

As for cameras- a DSLR will best but a good compact camera would work as long as you are able to set it to manual. You need as large as aperture as possible and exposures of 15 secs minimum up to about 10 mins. I was using a Nikon 5100 on a tripod with remote control using exposures of between 20 - 30 secs. It is a bit trial and error at the best of times as even the experts told us. A point and shoot camera will not work, nor will an iPad or video camera.

Edited by Host Sharon

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Your photos and information with them is really excellent - thank you so much.

 

We are looking at a similar cruise next year, but are a bit torn between going on Oriana which is a bigger ship, so will hopefully be more stable in bad weather, (which seems common up there at this time of year), or whether to go for a smaller ship (e.g. Marco Polo, Boudicca or Voyager) which have a more interesting itineraries, with ports along the coast of Norway and some scenic cruising on the inside passage.

 

I suspect you where up there fairly near the full moon, was it a problem when looking at the Northern lights, (we are thinking it would be best avoided)? Also, can I be cheeky and ask what type of camera you had - was it a fairly simple one or did you have an SLR - perhaps with a tripod?

 

Sorry to bombard you with questions.

 

I can't answer as to which would be the best ship, except to say we did have a couple of quite rough days at sea. Also bear in mind that few if any will be out on deck during the days at sea so you need plenty of indoor space and things to do. Yes it was close to the full moon and no it wasn't a problem that I could see. We certainly had two much better sightings than the Oriana cruise immediately before us.

 

And yes, I was using a Nikon 5100 DSLR with tripod and remote.

 

This is what we were told (or learned the hard way) on how to photograph the Northern Lights - when they appear.

 

First and most important - point and shoot automatic cameras, video cameras and iPads will not work. You have to be able set your camera up for long exposures - at least 15 secs and more if possible.

Use a tripod

Use as wide an angle lens as possible.

Switch to manual setting

Switch off flash - it will spoil everyone else's pictures and won't help yours.

Take off all filters including UV and Skylight - they reduce the light hitting the lens

Switch off vibration/shake reduction if available

Use an ISO of 400 (according to the onboard photographers) or 500 + (according to the local experts)

Set camera to as large an aperture as available

Set to bulb and experiment but you need exposures of at least 15 secs up to around to 10 mins

Set to daylight setting NOT fluorescent or artificial light or the colours won't be true

Use lens hood to keep frost/snow/ice off lens

Pre-focus to infinity or on a tree etc

Take spare batteries and keep in thermal sock close to body.

Take a small torch or headlight so you can see to set up the tripod etc.

 

And lastly - DON'T PANIC if/when the digital screen stops working! This happened to me and I thought the camera was broken but kept taking anyway. The screen came back on when it warmed up.

Also - acclimatise the equipment. One of the onboard photographers cracked a £600 lens

 

And finally - enjoy the Lights - don't watch all of them through a camera.

Edited by Host Sharon

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The main misconception is as well as a camera "sees" the Northern Lights better than a human eye so you get better photographs than what you have actually seen. I was also on Oriana in March and concur to everything that Sharon has said.

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Brilliant photos, thanks a lot for sharing. We were also on the trip and decided to watch the northern lights (if any!) from the ship. Not having the patience, expertise or a tripod we decided to simply watch the skies! We weren't disappointed. The whole trip was a great experience and of course the northern lights were the highlight. The other photos are also very well done and bring back great memories of all the places we visited and the almost surreal images of the heavy snow falls on the ship.

Edited by cardinal12

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