Friday, June 17, 2016

North Into Daylight

I flew back to Fairbanks the other night.  I left Seattle around 11:45 p.m. where it was completely dark and most people were in bed, dreaming of wonderful things.  I arrived at 2:00 a.m. to a place that was so light, it looked like the middle of the day.
It was strange flying north passing from darkness to daylight.  At one point on the right side of the plane, I saw a reddish band peeking up above the cloud layer.  It was like the sun was trying to rise.  On the left side of the plane, a half moon shone in the dark night making a beautiful sight.

As we progressed north, the sky began lightening until it was day time.  The only reason, I knew the time?  A flight attendant announced the time so everyone could turn their watches one hour earlier.

Fairbanks is far enough north that even with the sun setting, it does not get particularly dark because the sun does not get far enough below the horizon.  The sun sets around 1 a.m. and rises by 3:30 on the longest "day" of the year! which is not enough time for darkness to happen.   It is easy to start doing something outside at 7 p.m. and in no time, its 2 a.m!  I loose track of the passage of time most nights during summer.  I've even gotten calls from friends at 2 a.m. to meet at an all night diner for a quick snack.

My Window Shade
Imagine driving around in the middle of the night as if it were the middle of the day!  Many people have black out curtains or quilted shades fit in the window so the room gets some what dark.  I have a quilted roller curtain on my window to darken the room.  It does not get dark dark but it cuts enough light for me to sleep most nights.

 Honestly, most nights, I sleep a few hours but I usually end up taking a nap in the middle of the day so I get enough sleep.  It funny but even with the blackout curtains, my body knows its light outside.  It knows!

In a few days, the most famous event of summer happens.   Every year, the local minor league team "The Gold Panners" will have a game that starts around 10:30 or 11:00 and ends past midnight.  The field will not be artificially lit because its so light at that time of the night.

Alaskans both enjoy and appreciate the long days of summer.  It is fun to be out doing something in the middle of the night that is so light its as if its the middle of the day. 


  1. Ilove Alaska! It's a really different kind of place. I'm over from the bloggers meetup!

    1. Thank you for visiting. I've been up here around 20 years and I love the summers. Winter? Not so much when its -40 and there is a blizzard outside.