Views of the Northern Lights don't get much better than this

Feast your eyes on this mind boggling view of the Northern Lights, captured in the pre-dawn hours of July 15th by photographer Brad Goldpaint.

Goldpaint told io9 in an email that he photographed this particular display over Sparks Lake in Central Oregon. At latitudes that far south, it can be hard to spot aurorae this breathtaking, but conditions this weekend were ideal, as the solar activity responsible for this light show was a powerful X1.4 class flare (X being the highest possible classification for such solar explosions); stargazers as far south as Arkansas even caught a glimpse.

Still, it's hard to imagine many people had a better view of the lights than this. Just look at the combination of clouds, aurora, and points of starlight bouncing off the lake. All it's missing is a waterfall and a lunar rainbow.

You'll find tons more stunning astrophotography on Brad Goldpaint's website.

Top image used with permission from Brad Goldpaint.