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Ask Slashdot: How Did You Experience The Solar Eclipse? 211

NASA claims they set a record Monday with 40 million views of their eclipse coverage (12.1 million unique) and more than 2 million simultaneous views. Now Slashdot reader xmas2003 asks: "What did /.'ers do to experience this rare incredibly cool event and how did it turn out?" SmarterEveryDay Destin gets great geek cred for watching the ISS transit the eclipsed sun [YouTube] while we were fortunate to have an incredible experience on 40 acres of farmland watching the Total Solar Eclipse near Tryon, Nebraska -- here's a complete video of [a darkening crowd watching] the totality event from the middle of nowhere. While the pics/video are cool, the real-life experience of actually being there in person is even 100X better -- highly recommend you try to attend a future total solar eclipse!.
In my town it was cloudy all morning -- though I got a postcard from friends experiencing "the path of totality" in Idaho City. But how about you? How did you experience this week's solar eclipse?
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Ask Slashdot: How Did You Experience The Solar Eclipse?

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  • Obvious response (Score:5, Insightful)

    by redback ( 15527 ) on Sunday August 27, 2017 @07:36AM (#55092483)

    from the other side of the planet, you insensitive clod!

    • From _way_ too much coverage that blew the thing absolutely out of proportion.

    • Re:Obvious response (Score:4, Informative)

      by K. S. Kyosuke ( 729550 ) on Sunday August 27, 2017 @08:27AM (#55092585)
      So technically, you were experiencing a double eclipse, by both the Moon and the Earth.
    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by Anonymous Coward

      Personally, I set up an HD webcam on the roof of my mother's house, connected to a beowulf cluster of Raspberry Pi's performing real time ASCII art conversion on a 4x4 grid. From the safety of the basement, I logged into the raspberry pi machines via telnet on a wall of 16 monitors to watch the spectacle.

    • We were in the 90% zone for the recent solar eclipse and were entirely unwilling to make the drive to totality.

      However, I was intrigued by the various articles that spoke to the idea that you couldn't shoot photos without filters, that cellphones couldn't be used, etc.

      So, contrarian that I am, I shot DSLR photos without filters, and cellphone shots as well.

      No corona shots (90% zone means the corona was never accessible) but I got some adequate shots, some of which are online here. [flickr.com]

      • by Solandri ( 704621 ) on Sunday August 27, 2017 @11:32AM (#55093087)
        People don't say that because you can't get shots - modern cameras have fast enough shutter speeds that you can. You're not supposed to do it because if you hold the camera still while pointed at the sun too long (like on a tripod), you'll burn a hole in the shutter or (for shutterless cameras) burn a hole in the CCD/CMOS sensor.

        You know how as a kid you used to burn ants with a magnifying glass? That's exactly what the lens of your camera is doing to the shutter and sensor.

        It's less of a concern with higher-end DSLRs which use metal shutter blades (for a faster max shutter speed). You only have to worry about heat damage on those. But lower-end DSLRs still use a shutter curtain made of black fabric. The focused sunlight will burn right through that.
        • by E-Lad ( 1262 )

          Not so much burning a hole in anything, but certainly heating up the sensor and surrounding components to temperatures that will permanently damage them. A 80mm objective lens will focus about 60W of energy from the Sun. Spread across the surface area of a 35mm/APS-C/APS-H or 4/3rds sensor, that will heat up fast. Burning holes happens at prime focus, which would be your eyeball when looking through the viewfinder. No bueno.

        • by fyngyrz ( 762201 )

          People don't say that because...

          I know why they say it, or at least, why the ones who know what they're talking about say it; and I know under what conditions what they say does not apply. It's pedantic nonsense unless carefully triaged with the various conditions that cause the problem, one of which is time. There were articles all over the place making blanket statements that were misleading.

          Total aim time at the sun for the DSLR was a small fraction of a second. I swung the camera through the aim point,

        • by fyngyrz ( 762201 )

          It's less of a concern with higher-end DSLRs which use metal shutter blades (for a faster max shutter speed).

          No. When live view is on, the shutter is open. DSLR's use the camera sensor for live view. Likewise, the lens aperture may be open and the camera simulating the exposure. The f-stop and shutter settings you have for the shot will only be applied when you trigger the shot.

          You have to keep the time down to the absolute minimum. And you can't use the optical viewfinder to aim, so live view is the only

        • My wife had video going on her iPhone 5S. It still seems to work.

      • by brausch ( 51013 )

        We were in the 95% zone, but my youngest son and I chose to make the drive. About a five hour round trip. We took relatively back roads into central Oregon and had a great time. We saw just a little over one minute of totality. Even though I have an old, not great camera, it is still more capable than I am. :-) I did get two really good pictures though, one of the crescent moon and one during the totality. Lots of fun and good memories.

      • I was considering 99% totality. I figured "what's 1%" more but stuck to my guns and drove to the middle and... HOLY SHIT. I thought it was cool seeing the horizon fall dark. Very ominous. And just it being dark was pretty neat. And then I looked up at the sun and it was the most surreal, fantastical thing I've ever seen in my whole life.

        99%... "neat". 100% "HOLY MOTHER OF GOD WHAT IS THAT?!".

        The wonder an eclipse causes is apparently expressed by the function 1/((100-Eclipse%)/100)

    • from work... We have a partial eclipse in the Boston area from about 2:10pm to 2:45pm. Perfect time for a 30 minute work break. We passed around "eclipse glasses" from co-workers. The eclipse in 2024 will be a lot closer. I'll likely plan on seeing the totality of that one.

  • Hopkinsville, KY (Score:4, Informative)

    by Zarhan ( 415465 ) on Sunday August 27, 2017 @08:00AM (#55092525)

    Near centerline, 2 mins 41 seconds of totality.

    It was easy finding a location just before the eclipse and getting in. Getting out, on the other hand...11 hours to drive 250 miles to Indianapolis afterwards. I-69 completely jammed.

    Great experience except someone decided to start shooting fireworks during totality. It's not like there needed to be anything extra...

    • The solution to that was to take backroads instead of the Interstates.

      For some reason Google Maps routes EVERYONE on the Interstates, so they get completely clogged up with traffic. If you look at the map yourself you'll see tons of backroads that'll take you out of the area, which have far less traffic.

      That was my experience in South Carolina, of course, yours may vary. :)

      • In my experience, Google routed lots of people to a nearby state highway and a few county highways to connect. It was fun seeing old guys sitting on their porch in the middle of nowhere watching the line of 50 cars try to navigate a rural 4-way stop. At one point you could see the Interstate across a lake and it was just as backed up.

        This was in Southern IL travelling back from KY.

      • Yes Google routes you on major roads...

        The thing is at this point everyone knows that. So many thousands of people took the back roads. There is a reason they are not major roads, they cannot handle any large volume of backup without huge delays... in some small towns in Nebraska we had a line of cars that took about an hour to go smoke or two.

        I was able to mitigate that somewhat by taking dirt farm roads. But they often dead end eventually and you have to get on the minor roads at least to pass through

        • By traveling from Wisconsin to Paducah via Cincinnati (to visit Grandma and cousins along the way) we avoided the southbound Chicago eclipse traffic. But we had to cope with ordinary Cincinnati traffic. The GPS told us we were on the fastest route but a highrise interstate parking lot told us otherwise so we meandered through Low Price hill and found ourselves at the next Ohio River crossing, Anderson Ferry. It took 10-15 cars at a time and the near side backed onto a railroad which discouraged a long queu
      • Actually, going on the backroads was what slowed our return trip down. Apparently Google Maps doesn't track traffic levels on certain small roads, but still considers them as an alternate route. When the main road began to get bogged down, it sent us down an alternate road that it considered "better" because there was no traffic info for it. We we ended up taking nearly 2 hours to travel 1.5 miles because of a two-way stop sign. Basically each car on our road had to wait 15-30 seconds at the stop sign f
      • That was my experience in SC as well. However, once I got north of I-85 in Georgia, even the back roads went to shit... Atlanta metro sucks and it was 10x worse after the eclipse.

      • by suso ( 153703 ) *

        You can choose an option called "avoid highways" under route options to choose a non-interstate route.

    • Funny. We were in Madisonville, 35 minutes from Hopkinsville off the center-line and had 2 minutes of totality. (Had my phone saying "STOP STOP STOP" right at the end. Never thought I'd actually "look at the sun" with binoculars!) and left at 3. I saw I-69 jammed for miles too. I figured roughly 20 feet per car, 5250 feet in a mile, 2 lanes, 2 occupants per car, so that's a K. We passed at least 15 miles so that's maybe 15K people stuck in traffic. I waved at them all as I drove past in the other dir
    • Prairie City, OR. We were jerk-free. We camped on the school's baseball field. Because it's a school it's an alcohol and drug free zone. That probably helped discourage the jerks. There were no loud sound systems or any "enhancements". Just a lot of people exclaiming their delight, and applause at the beginning and end of totality.

      The only downside was the horizon being obstructed by mountains, so the sunset effect may have been less spectacular. I don't have anything to base it on since this was my

    • Look on the dark side. If you live in Indianapolis, you're in great shape for the 2024 eclipse. My son is moving there in mid-September, so if he stays there my wife and I can visit him.

    • by suso ( 153703 ) *

      Exactly, a similar situation for me. On the morning of from Bloomington, IN I took IN 37 south instead of I-69. It was nearly empty the whole way down to Hopkinsville, KY. The way back was busier, but not crowded at all. It may have taken 4 hours and 15 minutes, but I had no chance of getting stuck on an interstate with no way off. I had a feeling that everyone would take I-69 and get stuck in Evansville, which is exactly what happened.

      Google maps has a "avoid highways" feature that is great for finding a f

  • There was a solar eclipse? Are you sure? That seems like the kind of thing you would see in the news before it happens. ;)

  • Looking out my window while working
  • by Slartibartfast ( 3395 ) * <kenNO@SPAMjots.org> on Sunday August 27, 2017 @08:34AM (#55092607) Homepage Journal

    Went from NH to NE -- North Platte, in southwest Nebraska, to be precise. (Caught some stops like Niagara Falls and Mount Rushmore -- not to mention, say, the world's largest rocking chair and Wall Drug.) And I have to say that, to my surprise, totality was cooler than I had anticipated. After watching it, headed to Denver airport, where I hit the only traffic of note the entire trip: Denver rush hour.

    If you missed this one, try to catch the 2024. Really. Totality is just that cool -- though all too brief.

  • by ToTheStars ( 4807725 ) on Sunday August 27, 2017 @08:42AM (#55092631)

    I visited some family in South Carolina, and some other friends of the family converged there as well. We basically had a little picnic, set up some cameras, and then watched the shrinking Sun with our glasses.

    Even at ten minutes prior, it was eerie! Dark as evening, but with the Sun still seventy degrees overhead. I've never experienced conditions like it in my life. The temperature was noticeably cooler, as well.

    And then, totality itself! We were on the southern edge of the path, so only about a minute thirty of totality, but my goodness, they should have sent a poet! The sky was as dark as night, but the horizon was lit by the sunlight that made it around the Moon -- not red like a usual sunset, but blue! And of course, the hole in the sky where the Sun used to be.

    Even knowing in advance that it would be happening, there are no words to describe the awe we felt. I can hardly begin to understand the panic that people must have felt before we understood what caused them!

    Interestingly, because we saw the eclipse from a small farm, we could see the reactions of some non-human animals as well. Chickens went inside their roost during totality (and then came back outside as soon as it was done, no worse for wear), and the gnats all went to ground (and then came back with a vengeance when it was over). We didn't notice any other creatures reactions, so maybe it was over too quickly for them to be concerned. (Incidentally, some neighbors were out of their minds over whether they should get eclipse glasses for their animals...no need to worry, they've been dealing with eclipses for millions of years before we domesticated them.)

    Wherever you are in the world, keep your ears open for when the next eclipse is coming near you, and make the effort to see totality -- it's worth it! I'm already looking forward to 2024!

  • by Snard ( 61584 ) <(moc.liamg) (ta) (kulawahs.ekim)> on Sunday August 27, 2017 @08:50AM (#55092655) Homepage
    Drove from south central Wisconsin to St. Clair, MO (a small town of 5000 which was on the center line). Friendly folks there, who set aside 7 different areas to view the eclipse (baseball and soccer fields, church properties, or just along the streets.) A police officer stopped by a few times to hand out free glasses to anyone who didn't have them, and there was an EMT vehicle nearby to make sure people were okay (it was 95 most of the day, until the sun went away for a bit...) We had a fantastic time, and met a number of folks from as far away as Albuquerque and somewhere in Texas. Viewing was also great.
  • I and 11,000 other people saw it at Agate Fossil Beds National Monument in western Nebraska. It lasted 2 minutes 23 seconds. The park is big enough that it didn't seem overcrowded. There were no artificial lights of any kind during the eclipse, so it was pretty spectacular.
  • My workplace was close to the center of the path of totality and the company bought glasses for all of us, so a bunch of us went outside and watched it from the parking lot. It was kinda cool.

  • I live just outside of Charleston, SC, and we had a frog-choker of a rain storm that moved in and obscured the eclipse. My neighbor's rain gauge claimed over 4 inches (10+ cm for you Metric Folks). It was something of a letdown, but I still enjoyed the experience.
  • Glendo is a tiny town with a population of 205. About 100,000 extra people showed up for the eclipse. The locals were very friendly, and allowed us to observe from the sports field next to the school. They were so taken back by all this, the locals were out videoing the traffic as it arrived, since they had never seen anything like it. The location was perfect. Absolutely clear blue sky. A couple of hot air balloons drifted by just as totality hit. Absolutely breathtaking event. Then, reality hit. We had to
  • According to this item, some people tried to protect their eyes with sunblock: http://nbc4i.com/2017/08/25/pa... [nbc4i.com]

  • by Ol Olsoc ( 1175323 ) on Sunday August 27, 2017 @09:48AM (#55092771)
    In Pennsylvania we were outside of totality, but a lot of the sun was still blotted out. The day started out looking very unpromising, with clouds moving in but I had my projection box and astronnomical filters at the ready. Still not looking too good right after lunch. Then maybe 25 minutes from totality, the clouds broke, so the wife and I went out in the front yard. Then the neighbors all started out of their homes, and we ended up holding an impromptu block party. We all compared our various seeing devices. One lady had a multiple pinhole sheet that projected multiple images, I had an aluminum pinhole that could project the solar disc to about a foot in diameter, and we found out that we could use our hands to form simple pinholes.

    I also had my astronomy filters which gave a nice view, turning the solar disc into a blue color for direct viewing. These were a big hit.

    When looking away from the sun, you could see that shadows were fuzzy and odd looking, and sunlight filtering through tree leaves would show thousands of crescents on the ground.

    When we hit as close to totality as we were going to get, it was fairly dark. It looked like late evening, but without the reddish color shift of a normal evening sun. A lot of birds started sqwaking, especially some pileated woodpeckers that visit our feeders. An adult was making a lot of noise, my best guess is a parent telling a young one it was time to get home for the evening. Actually got pretty loud.

    Then almost like a switch, it started getting much brighter. A pretty enjoyable time. We all chatted for a while longer, then headed back to whatever we were doing before the eclipse.

  • by zamboni1138 ( 308944 ) on Sunday August 27, 2017 @10:16AM (#55092839)

    Enjoying the near complete silence until my jackass neighbor started blasting "Total Eclipse of the Heart" for way too long.

  • ... like this [deviantart.net].

    Seriously, I made a pinhole viewer out of a 10 foot piece of ABS pipe. I got a really nice image of 93% totality.

  • We did lots of pre-planning, selected Jackson Hole and got reservations about a year ago for eight of us. Weather looked iffy for a bit but was clear for the eclipse. Crowds were not bad in town. The locals called it just slightly busier than a normal summer weekend. We suspect that there are only so many rooms available and people got scared off by the hype. Outside town in the Tetons it was a different story.

    Took some photos (mostly automated to not miss the experience). https://flic.kr/s/aHsm6RakMj [flic.kr]

    I also

  • We have relatives who live in the path of totality, so we drove from Seattle out to Wyoming and stayed with them. From their yard we watched the total eclipse, and I recorded it two ways:

    1080P Close-up: https://youtu.be/LD0sAIavU-A [youtu.be]

    360 Video: https://youtu.be/ZyymEkOblGM [youtu.be]

  • I had to convince my wife to take the day off, and it worked. We had three different locations in mind which were each in totality and about 2.5 hours from home, so we watched weather.com up until we had to make a decision and leave.

    It was to be partly cloudy to mostly cloudy in all locations at the time the eclipse was going into totality, but at the last minute, one location (in KY) changed to sunny, so we made the decision and took off after dropping our son at school (he has already started school h
  • https://www.youtube.com/watch?... [youtube.com]

    It's a partial eclipse - but in this 10-second video, got a really nice image of a reflection of the eclipse at 4k - the sun/moon combo rotates around eachother, as clouds do their dance. Watch full-screen and look at the upper-left, rather than the direct sun image.

    It made for a nice cool day in Florida. Definitely looked like late evening, even well outside the totality area.

    Ryan Fenton

  • And here I was thinking those shrooms were some kind of powerful! You know, making it look like some massive object was moving in front of the sun and all. Needless to day, I sketched out.

  • Took Amtrak to Columbia, SC from Miami (adding, "fun train trip" to "eclipse"). The train hit a guy on a bike & got delayed ~3.5 hours (tragic, but it meant we had a few more hours to sleep, and got to see SC in daylight instead of arriving at 4am). Got to the hotel at 9, had breakfast, then took a nap for another hour or so.

    Spent Sunday at the SC State Museum (an impressive, top-notch museum, I might add), grabbed dinner, hit the observatory, then partied in downtown Columbia (not exactly South Beach,

  • I went camping in South Carolina with my cronies, in a State Park campground *directly under the line of totality*.

    The place was packed, and people were complaining that the WiFi was slow. Talk about your first world problem. We reserved our spots months in advance.

    We went there on Saturday and left on Tuesday to avoid the traffic. The weather cooperated, the view was spectacular.

    We had a collection of telescopes and big telephoto lenses, some great food and illegal potables.

    Good times.

  • Which is actually the site of one of the bigger Eclipse festivals in the north west coast. We didn't actually choose that location specially. We just happen to live about an hour and a half away anyway, and we just went driving to find a place to watch. Turns out a few tens of thousands of people did too, and it caused a Hurricane Katrina level traffic problems on those two lane little US highways up there. And I was actually IN Katrina as a truck drive stuck running relief supplies.

    At the end of the day

  • Someone brought a few pairs of glasses. We took about 5 minutes out and looked at it. STFU, GBTW.

  • The girlfriend and I had talked about it, but didn't make a decision until Friday afternoon. We both asked for Monday off and got it. On Sunday, around noon, we hopped in the car and drove towards southern Illinois because the forecasts in that direction were best. I had been considering west too, and had planned for rough areas in either direction that would give us enough time to get back home so that we could make it to work on Tuesday.

    I didn't have an exact spot in mind, so I told my GPS to take me t

  • Extended family members converged from around the southeast to the parking lot of the First Baptist Church of Cross Hill, SC, which is about 100 yards from the center line of totality. We brought a picnic lunch including eclipse-themed items such as Sunkist cola and Moon-Pies. We choose Cross Hill since it is not near any major cities or highways, thereby avoiding crowds and gridlock.

    I brought a telescope and a white sheet to spread on the ground in order to see the shadow bands. The weather was partly

  • Location: Baltimore-DC region
    Eyewear: Didn't get glasses in time. Didn't make it a priority because we weren't getting totality, but now I wish I did. I'm going to order a set to have on hand.
    How watched: I took off work, came home, brought up NASA TV on the computer (Nasa's DC raw feed was broken, disappointingly). Kept looking outside, and yes, the light became weird. Things became dimmer, like under heavy late-day cloud cover, yet shadows were still visible. Then it started brightening. I didn't bother

  • Now that's an experience...

  • ... with a homemade cardbox set up to view a partial solar eclipse. It wasn't darker and cooler in my rural area. :( This would had been my second time in my life for any solar eclipses so far.

  • by ve3oat ( 884827 ) on Sunday August 27, 2017 @12:25PM (#55093245)

    Clear skies but only about 60% total. Observed using a small telescope used in projection-mode (for safe viewing). I also took continuous precision frequency measurements of radio station WWV near Boulder Colorado on a frequency of 10.0 MHz. Did this for 8 hours on the day of the eclipse and the day before (for control). My measurements clearly showed the ionospheric Doppler shifting of the signal from WWV as the moving zone of totality crossed over the radio signal path from WWV to my location. Uploaded almost 1.4 GB of data to the Ham SCI community at zenodo.org.

    My wife and I were amazed at the strange lighting effect of the reduced sunlight near maximum (60%). Talk about a pale sun! Many of our garden flowers closed, at least partially, and all the birds seemed to disappear too.

  • You drove your motorcycle up to Glendo, Wyoming, to see the total eclipse of the sun...
    You're so vain, you probably think this song is about you
    Don't you
    Don't you

    https://www.facebook.com/Nambe... [facebook.com]

  • It was cloudy. One of my daughters and I made a big cardboard pinhole camera viewing box. Tested it early in the morning and it worked great. We watched the clock and went outside to view the beginning of the eclipse only to find that clouds were rolling in and if we were able to glimpse the sun's disc, it was greatly dimmed by the increasing haze and clouds. By the time the maximum eclipse in our area--about 85%--should have been visible, the cloud cover had darkened the sky more than the eclipse ever woul

  • If Trump can do it, why couldn't I?

    Didn't see much of anything. Still don't?

  • I was working near the Alabama coast in Baldwin County and it was totally cloudy with light rain falling during the whole time. You couldn't even make out where the sun was through the clouds, not even a bright spot.
  • I travelled from Maryland to Oregon to attend the Symbiosis music and art festival that was taking place on private land in the middle of the Ochoco National Forest outside of Prineville, Oregon. I had been to a total solar eclipse before in Turkey in 2006, and this was a reunion of sorts as I was meeting up with some friends I hadn't seen since then.

    I brought a lightweight tracking mount with me (Fornax Lightrack II) and mounted a Canon 5D Mk. 2 camera with EF 400mm 5.6L prime lens + 1.4x teleconverter on

  • It turns out I was already planning a road trip to St. Louis, MO anyway, to visit with family and friends. So when I mentioned arriving the day before the eclipse, a couple of my old friends mentioned they owned property out in Steelville, MO (about an hour's drive from St. Louis itself), and we were welcome to stay the night there on Sunday to watch the eclipse on Monday, as it was in the path of totality.

    I brought my Celestron Nexstar telescope, a solar filter for it, and the camera adapter for my Canon 7

  • I drove from New Hampshire to Tennessee to watch the eclipse from a public park in Goodlettsville. I have had "total eclipse" on my bucket list since High School. The best part was that my children and grandchildren joined me for this experience.

  • It was overcast and raining here. Illinois is too far to travel. I'm waiting for 2099, when the path of totality will pass over my home.
  • My fun was watching the traffic jams on the various states' traffic cams.

  • My wife and I drove to Kingstree, SC from Sunset Beach, NC. Easy drive of about 2 hours. Went into a McD's to get some coffee and take a ..... There was a nice grassy, shady spot between McD's and a Bank so we just set up camp for 2 hours. A number of people joined us and the crowd was real congenial. There was a young couple (20's) from Boston that drove down and an older couple (80's) from Florida. Some people had extra glasses and some had none so they got shared all around. We took picture of each othe
  • I live in CA but happened to be in Australia last week. The view there was phenominal.

    The sky started to go dim at around 6pm. By 7pm we were in totality, and the whole thing lasted over 12 hours. Incredible.

  • Don't have a TV, so watched it on the news on my laptop. Saved me the crowds and the expenses of driving to a place along the path of the eclipse

  • We live in Franklin, TN, just south of the edge of the zone of occlusion. Actually, we could hit the south edge of the zone with a 15 minute drive. But I wanted to be closer to center line.

    We went to Gallatin, TN, and decided to go to Bledsoe Creek State Park. I would realize later that the center line passes through the north side of the park, which explained the large number of people there. The park was closed with police guarding the entrance, and cars parked along the road outside.

    We found a histor

  • Took my camera to work, stepped outside to snap photos about every 10-15 minutes. Took about 30, then stitched the photos together from start to finish. https://flic.kr/s/aHsm3hyXWX [flic.kr] Nikon D7200, cheap Tamron 70-300mm lens, snap-on-the-lens solar filter, all hand held.
  • Great landscape video. Yeah, thats what a site looks like in a good totality.

  • https://www.google.com/maps/@3... [google.com] Me and my dog had all of Yellow Bald Mountain to ourselves right up to just before totality when a family made the climb up also. There was a moment when I had quite the vertigo experience due to the odd light filtering down thru the canopy as the totality ended. My dog would have slept thru the whole thing if I'd let her..... ;p

  • View of corona was beautiful. But, I had forgotten that we get to see the chromosphere too and that was ethereal. I saw it as an evanescent pink/crimson ring around the photosphere. Do any of you who saw totality remember it well enough to describe?
  • I took a nap instead of standing in the yard and looking at the moon cross the sun. Been there, seen that.
  • by Capt.Albatross ( 1301561 ) on Sunday August 27, 2017 @05:40PM (#55094289)

    We were planning to go to Nebraska, and specifically to the road (state route 92) that runs through Tryon and hews closely to the centerline, but a deteriorating forecast for that area caused us to make the trek to Unity, Oregon. I am glad to see that the weather was fine in Nebraska (as it was where we were.)

    Our reasons for picking both areas were: 1) statistically, a high probability of clear skies in the morning at this time of year; 2) a clear view of the sky (checked using Street View); 3) roads running along the centerline of totality, so we could hope to dodge clouds if we had to; 4) somewhere likely to have a low density of viewers, so that it would be possible to move, if necessary, without being caught in traffic. When switching to Oregon, we also considered wildfire locations and forecast wind direction (the forest service has frequently-updated fire location maps and reports.)

    We printed maps showing roads and the path of totality, in case cellphone navigation failed us (which it did, but on account of the location's remoteness, not service overload.)

    We were least certain about the density of viewers, but the roads were so empty as we approached our destination that I worried that I had made a huge navigation error!

  • of the maximum moon coverage, so no eclipse for us

  • by HeckRuler ( 1369601 ) on Sunday August 27, 2017 @07:58PM (#55094711)

    First off, getting up into the path of totality was fine.

    We drank a lot the night before. There was a lot of history talk because they're huge nerds.

    At the event I set up a quick'n'easy altar with some fancy cloth and a C'thulhu bobble-head. During the eclipse, we got a video of us sacrificing a heart.... of artichoke. So... you're welcome for

    And then we road eternal, shiny, and chrome on the Eclipse road! Services were closed. Roads were clogged. We spent hours at a standstill. Now... the weekend before, I decked out my car with temporary peel-off paint and gave it some decals from MadMax. I dressed up as a raider with spikes on some (way oversized) football shoulder-pads, and a facemask, and a metalic arm thingy. We had nerf weapons and I wanted my crew to lean out the windows with the tiki torches as thundersticks, but they weren't up for it, and by the time we switched traffic had picked up. So that didn't happen. Also, the shoulder pads were WAY too big for a long-ass car-ride. And the spikes had a non-negligible risk of tearing up my upholstery, so that got ditched real early.

    The 3 hour drive turned into a 6 hour drive and everyone was tired by the end. But with spare guzzoline and plenty of agricola, we survived!

    (Also, the peel-off paint works fine.... as long as the coverage is enough. MASK IT, and spray it thick. Otherwise the tiny specks don't rub off nearly as easy as the thick stuff. ugh.)

  • I had eclipse goggles at hand, but should I have trusted Amazon's procurement procedures?
    Instead, I placed my binoculars over my head - fat end toward the sun - small end toward the ground - and aimed the lunar/solar image onto my shadow that was cast on my patio.
    It turns out that I could have trusted the eclipse goggles because four other people with me used said goggles with no blinding results.
    However, next eclipse, I'll still use my binoculars.

  • ... but right at the moment of eclipse stupid moon came up and prevented me from witnessing this magnificent event by passing right in front of the sun, that stupid bitch.

  • I rounded up a couple of astronomy freaks and on a thumbs up on clear(ish) weather report on Friday for "partly cloudy" on Monday and made the decision to head down to White House, Tennessee -- smack dab in the middle of the totality track. We headed out from Buffalo, NY on Saturday to Pittsburgh, then Sunday to Cincinnati, leaving early Monday morning for Tennessee. No problems.

    Got a prime spot at 7AM no sweat in a shelter in a local park with electricity, restrooms and water. By around 10am or so the par

  • Where we were, was overcast, but only lightly, so we could see the corona through the cloud cover. Just a minute before totality, I pointed out that the eclipse was surrounded by a rainbow ring which was a cool consolation prize.

  • I was with my family and a friend, and we had rooms in a motel in Columbia, Missouri. (My friend bought the eclipse glasses, and almost forgot them.) We'd had the rooms reserved since March. We arrived on Sunday.

    On Monday, another couple of friends in an RV joined us, as their planned viewing spot had clouds forecast. We took up spots in the parking lot.

    It was hazy, and I was looking at the partial through the glasses. Then it cleared, about a minute to totality. My friends were looking for heat

  • Fortunately, I live in Nashville which was on the path of totality. So I could view it with friends on the Vanderbilt campus. The university threw a great eclipse-watching party for members of the campus community with a giant outdoor video display showing NASA streaming videos, a countdown clock. etc. They also provided water, ice cream and plenty of folding chairs. I've heard that clouds obscured totality in downtown Nashville, but at the campus the view was unobstructed and absolutely marvelous! Alas, th

Adding features does not necessarily increase functionality -- it just makes the manuals thicker.