As we near the countdown for the total solar eclipse on August 21, 2017, there are fleeting rumors that have been filtering regarding power outages and possible panic. The ‘path of totality’ will travel across the United States from Oregon to South Carolina, but while this may be the first total solar eclipse in 99 years, the path crosses each state for only a few minutes and there is no cause for alarm. The professionals that are monitoring and managing the various power stations are completely prepared for the slight dip that will occur. For you, there should be only one focus: taking this moment in time to enjoy an incredible celestial experience.
The professionals that are monitoring and managing the various power stations are completely prepared for the slight dip that will occur. For you, there should be only one focus: taking this moment in time to enjoy an incredible celestial experience.
The Path of Totality
The first locations to experience the eclipse will be in Oregon and as the path takes its 70-mile wide trek across the country it will slowly touch the states of Idaho, Wyoming, Nebraska, Kansas, Missouri, Illinois, Kentucky, Tennessee, Georgia and North Carolina. Those that have the chance of a lifetime to witness the eclipse will see that the moon will cross the sun and it will create total darkness for just a few glorious minutes. The entire trip across the states will take approximately ninety minutes and then
The entire trip across the states will take approximately ninety minutes and then viewing will head out to sea.
Start early with your plans
If you are planning to travel to a spot for viewing the event, you had better start creating your journey early. There are an incredible number of locations for viewing but since this is a once in a lifetime moment, anticipate that the most popular will also involve traffic.
Some state departments and authorities are anticipating that many will arrive at the same time and since there is an approximate population of 12 million along the ‘path’ and almost 25 million are planning to drive, it is being compared to a hurricane-like evacuation for traffic volume. Many of the hotels, motels, and inns are already taking reservations so don’t wait until the last minute. Campgrounds that are on the path of totality are also filling up with bookings so make sure that you contact them now.
Many of the hotels, motels, and inns are already taking reservations so don’t wait until the last minute. Campgrounds that are on the path of totality are also filling up with bookings so make sure that you contact them now.
What you should expect to experience
The total solar eclipse involves the movement of the moon and its shadow traveling from west to east and the path will follow in the same direction for the ninety miles of totality. The eclipse will occur later in the day the further east that you travel. To get a full picture of the path, you can use the online interactive map. This will help you to coordinate your personal plans to let you know which location to select that is the most convenient to you and can offer you the best experience.
Depending upon your location, you can expect the eclipse to last from around two minutes to two minutes and forty seconds. As the eclipse begins it will cast a lighter shadow on the earth’s surface known as the ‘penumbra’ of the moon. The dark shadow, known as the ‘umbral’ shadow will then slowly approach. When the umbra reaches the earth, viewers will be able to witness a total eclipse which will bring darkness in the middle of the day.
While you and your family will be energized to see the eclipse, understand that cloud cover can occur. In most cases, the moon’s shadow will break up connective clouds, however, to keep tabs on the weather status you can use the interactive Google map for updates.
Bring Your Safety Glasses to Protect your eyes
It is absolutely critical that you and all members of your group keep your specialty eclipse glasses handy. Most locations will be selling them and these glasses are a requirement in viewing the eclipse. Without them, you can burn the cornea of your eyes during much of the eclipse. Do not rely on standard sunglasses, your eclipse glasses must be the specially designed styles with polarized lenses.
If you are bringing video equipment and cameras, these also must have specialty lenses, however, it is advised that you enjoy the eclipse as many professionals will be creating incredible shots with high-resolution cameras and video equipment. It is not advised to bring your pets, as the eclipse may frighten them as well as harm their eyes.
This is an incredible opportunity for you, your family and friends to experience a celestial moment that is not scheduled to happen again in the U.S. until April 8, 2024.
Make your plans, take all safety precautions and be a part of history that you will be talking about for many years.