Winter camping has its perks, starting with no crowds and bright stars. Something has woken me up. As I gather my bearings, it occurs to me that it’s the light. I look at my watch: three in the morning. It should be pitch-dark – it’s winter and I’m in the wilderness. The moon is below the horizon; sunrise is nearly five hours away. Still, something is making our campsite very bright. I wrestle my arms out of my warm mummy bag and reach to unzip my tent’s storm flap.The wintry night air prickles through the space-age fabrics of my sweater and gloves. Tugging the zipper loosens ice crystals condensed on the inside of the canopy. They tickle my cheeks like tiny snowflakes as they fall. The storm flap drops away, revealing a sky ablaze with billowing curtains of green and purple light. The aurora borealis stretches in an arc from one horizon to the other, above the frozen surface of Waskesiu Lake in Prince Albert National Park.
Westworld Saskatchewan Magazine, Winter 2010