This thread for those who have seen eclipses of the sun and moon to swap stories and talk about past and future events.
My favorite was during the last solar eclipse I saw, in August, 2017, when I saw how the sunlight filtered through the trees-- and the tree leaves acted as thousands of little pinhole cameras-- and the trees projected an image of the eclipse-crescents onto the concrete.
My dad was always great at doing things like photographing eclipses and sunspots and bailey’s beads. I don’t have the right filters and gear for that kind of thing. But I always drag the kids out at night to come look at the lunar eclipse (which happens far more frequently).
This one was from the annular eclipse that came through in 2012.
While not strictly an eclipse, my favorite was the 2012 transit of Venus. I have a solar filter for my backyard telescope which allowed my dad and I to watch the event. It’s pretty rare–the next one is in the 22nd century, and it happened on my dad’s birthday.
Next to that I really enjoyed the recent eclipse visible from North America. I only saw it as a partial eclipse. I would love to be able to see one during totality. Probably in 2024 unless I move across country this will be possible.
When eclipse-mania hit last year, I was too late going out to look for viewing glasses, and everyone was sold out. My son’s grandfather had been a welder, and he left me his welding goggles, since I also worked in construction. I did my research, and made sure I had the required safety glass level in the goggles so as not to damage my eyes. It was only a partial eclipse here in Los Angeles, but I was able to see it very well!
I wish I could have seen that. I was on a large barren hill for that eclipse, so I could see the on-coming umbra. Was it total where you were? I recall the light taking on a strange golden color right before totality.
For future reference, you don’t need any special camera equipment for a total eclipse. This picture was taken with a normal camera at 432mm, ISO 200, f/4, 1/15 of second.
I missed the Venus transit, but a did see a Transit of Mercury. The entire event was supposed to take five hour, but I only saw around one minute of it due the thick clouds!
Saw one during nursing school and it did have an eerie feeling atmosphere to it in the middle of the day. We all ran outside to experience it.
Cool, when and where was it?
Last summer’s eclipse was 95% here, and I got some cool pictures, similar to those posted above. But my favorite eclipse story is from the September 1997 lunar eclipse, which was not visible here, but was visible in the Middle East. As it happened, I was TDY to the U.S. Embassy in Damascus when it happened. I was billeted at the Sheraton Hotel, and their Italian restaurant moved outdoors in good weather, which we certainly had that evening. I borrowed a pair of binocs from one of my permanent party co-workers, occupied a table, and set to alternately consuming pasta and watching the progress of the eclipse. The locals didn’t have a clue until they saw me staring at the sky thru binoculars. Those who asked also got a peek, and there were many exclamations of “Allahu akbar!”, which is a lot more than just a jihadist exclamation.
August 2017 – my son and I took the day off from school and drove to Casper, Wyoming, to see the eclipse in totality.
As we sat on a hill with dozens of others, it gradually got cooler and cooler, many of us pulling on a sweater as totality approached.
The beautiful and gentle wisps of light around the moon at totality was awe-inspiring. To me, it didn’t look anything like the photos I’d seen. The sky wasn’t black. It was the purplish blue of dusk. And the area around the sun and moon was a paler, softer blue with the white wisps of light surrounding them.
It was so worth it.
Please God, we’ll be traveling somewhere to see the next one visible in the US in 2024.
Agreed! To me it looked like it was etched out of pearl. Did the light before totality look somewhat golden? It did in western WY where I observed it.
Anyone planning on going the next eclipse in 2019 in south america? I was going to, but ran out of time.
The light before totality had a strange tinge to it, a bit golden, a bit reddish.
No. We don’t have the funds for international travel.
The secret I have heard from old eclipse chasers is to make international eclipses your only real vacations.
The next 6 years of total solar eclipses:
The 2023 eclipse is rare in that it will start and end as an annular eclipse, but will be total in the middle of the path.
I saw a lunar eclipse in 2015. It had a strange bluish tinge to it.