When we decided to go on a trip to view the northern lights, we went down the science rabbit hole of how aurora forecasts work. We thought that if we had a good understanding of how all the measurements are made, we could increase our odds of seeing the northern lights.
As it turns out, reading aurora and solar activity charts is not easy (and I say this as Angie and I hold a small stack of engineering degrees between the two of us and I've taken an entire year's worth of astronomy for good measure). For those who are not as nerdy as we are, looking at these charts can be quite daunting and may cause you to simply stick to the analog of the KP Index and call it a day.
So in this one, we thought we'd share a few of our favorite things to watch out for on aurora tracking sites like Space Weather Live to help you better understand the charts that you may be looking at!