Saturday, January 25, 2020
The skye times mobile

Glendale is very quickly becoming the centre of the universe, at least when it comes to seeing the Northern Lights.

For now thanks to local man, Andy Stables and his obsession with the sky high show, up to a 1,000 people a night are logging on to an app he has created which accurately predicts just when the fantastic light show can be seen.

A part-time crofter and also working as a web developer, Andy set up home on Skye with his wife Alison ten years ago and since then his love of the stars, and particularly the Northern Lights has just grown and grown.


He said: "I got into star gazing by accident as there’s so much space and dark skies here you can’t help but look up at the stars. I’d seen the auroras a few times without fully realising what I was seeing, then during strong displays I’d see distinct columns and try to capture these on camera.

“It took me a long time to work out how do it but when I turned over the camera and saw the image I’d captured for the first time it just blew my mind. It was an amazing sight and from then on I became addicted to taking photographs of the spectacle.”

Over the years he has gradually becoming an increasing expert in how to spot the phenomena and began letting friend and neighbours know when there was a chance to see the Lights.

He added: “I started a sort of phone-a-friend list so every time I spotted the aurora happening I’d phone to let them know so they could head out with their cameras, but it got to the point where I had so many people to phone I’d miss the spectacle myself!”

Following advice from colleagues he set up a Facebook page and developed a free app, so others could enjoy the regular spectacles above the dark skies of Glendale too.

“It’s been crazy, with something like more than 11,000 people following the Glendale SkyeAuroras Facebook page,” said Andy.

“It’s now taking up a lot of my spare time as it’s pretty complex and takes a lot of coding to put together.

“I’m not making any money out of it and have no plans to write a book or anything, I just think it’s a nice thing to be able to help people see the auroras and I get a lot of thank you messages from people who are delighted that, as a result of the app, they have been able to see them and photograph them.

If you want to find out more about Andy then when not follow this Skye Times link to his Facebook page

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