In a moment of pure chance, Canadian photographer and YouTuber Timothy Joseph Elzinga, known as Timmy Joe on YouTube, captured something out of this world. At 1.30am on 6 January he awoke to surreal light pillars shooting into the sky. Naturally, our curiosity got the better of us, so we caught up with Timothy to find out more about the experience.
It all started when Timothy’s 2-year-old woke him up in his home in North Bay, Ontario.
“I was awoken by my 2-year-old child at 1:30 am the morning of Friday Jan 6th. I soothed him and went to the bathroom and that’s when I first saw the beams of light flashing in the sky,” Timothy said.
“I opened the bathroom window and even took the screen out so I could get those images. It was really cold. I thought they were the Northern Lights at first but I quickly realised this was something a lot more localised to my area”.
Timothy was taken aback by the surreal encounter and couldn’t help but investigate the pillars further. He soon realised the further he got from the light pollution of his town, the less vibrant the light beams were.
Light Pillars just like the ones Timothy captured, happen in icy terrains when either natural or man-made light bounces off ice crystals floating close to the ground. If the weather conditions are right, and chance is on your side, it can happen right before your eyes.
Timothy said the reaction to his images has been amazing, with some people referring to the beams as a scene from Star Trek or a supernatural sign. As it turned out, the explanation wasn’t as Close Encounters of the First Kind as it first seemed. It was the manifest beauty of nature.