Where will you be on August 21 2017?
If you are traveling thru Idaho in August make sure your plans include a viewing spot for the first eclipse in 38 years to occur over the contiguous United States. This is the first elclipse since 1918 to cross the country from the Pacific Ocean to the Atlantic Ocean. There won’t be another in America until 2024. What’s the big deal about a total solar eclipse? A solar eclipse is a lineup of the Sun, the Moon, and Earth. The Moon, directly between the Sun and Earth, casts a shadow on our planet. If you’re in the dark part of that shadow (the umbra), you’ll see a total eclipse. If you’re in the light part (the penumbra), you’ll see a partial eclipse. Near mid-day the sky will go from daylight to deep twilight as the moon passes directly between the sun and Earth.
This eclipse is especially noteworthy because it will only span the continental U.S. and nowhere else. Being referred to as “The Great American Eclipse,” visitors worldwide are booking their flights to the U.S. in anticipation.
The center line crosses through 10 states. After a great west-to-east path across Oregon, the center line takes roughly nine minutes to cross a wide swath of Idaho, entering the western part of the state just before 11:25 a.m. MDT and leaving just before 11:37 a.m. MDT. Next up is Wyoming, where the umbral center line dwells until just past 11:49 a.m. MDT. The center line hits the very northeastern part of Kansas at 1:04 p.m. CDT and enters Missouri a scant two minutes later. At 1:19, the shadow’s midpoint crosses the Mississippi River, which at that location is the state border with Illinois. The center line leaves Illinois at its Ohio River border with Kentucky just past 1:24 p.m. CDT. Totality for that state starts there two minutes earlier and lasts until nearly 1:29 p.m. CDT. The center line crosses the border into Tennessee around 1:26 p.m. CDT. Then, just past the midpoint of that state, the time zone changes to Eastern. The very northeastern tip of Georgia encounters the center line from just past 2:35 p.m. EDT until not quite 2:39 p.m. EDT. Finally, it’s South Carolina’s turn. The last of the states the center line crosses sees its duration from 2:36 p.m. EDT to 2:39 p.m. EDT.
Idaho is expecting thousands of eclipse viewers to travel thru the state. Some communities are hosting weekend events and will have designated viewing & parking areas.
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Everyone in the continental U.S. will see at least a partial eclipse. In fact, if you have clear skies on eclipse day, the Moon will cover at least 48 percent of the Sun’s surface.
Where will you be on August 21 2017