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Thread: T-minus One Year And Counting: First Total Solar Eclipse in the USA Since 1979!

  1. #61
    A friend of Hal. midtown's Avatar
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  2. #62
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    We had pretty decent coverage in Madison for the 1994 eclipse. I was working in maintenance at a hotel while figuring out what I would do with an English degree so I planned my daily schedule to do some outdoor repair on an AC unit after replacing our U.S. flag. The best part for us happened while I was replacing the flag and I got chewed out by a vet who saw that I wasn't taking enough care with it and stopped. He was right, I was distracted and I've kept that in mind with flags ever since - give it the proper attention. We weren't in the main path, but it still was fun to be outside for as much of it as possible. The HVAC repair was easy and put me up on the roof where I could take my time without anyone noticing. I always liked going up to do that - sadly any skills I learned there are mostly gone now.
    Eff LBD!

  3. #63
    Subversively normal skypigeon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ren Butler View Post
    Can you home in on a more exact year range?

    1979 was the last totality in the continental US (an improbable drought), but it was only a moderate partial eclipse in Indiana -- not enough to really cause the sky to get dark.

    http://astro.ukho.gov.uk/eclipse/0111979/S1979Feb26.pdf

    The 1970 event was even deeper for Indiana, but again, not dark enough.

    BTW, Indianapolis hasn't seen full totality since before 1500! We did get an annular event (better than partial, but not nearly as great as total) in 1994.

    http://astro.ukho.gov.uk/eclipse/Ind...ed_States.html
    It would have been between 1968 and 1972. That much I know. I think.

  4. #64
    iLl-enfORmed yOKel Ren Butler's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by skypigeon View Post
    It would have been between 1968 and 1972. That much I know. I think.
    Thanks. That leave three candidates:

    9/11/1969 (barely partial in Indiana -- much better elsewhere)

    3/7/1970 (73% obscuration for Gosport)

    7/10/1972 (51% obscuration for Gosport)

    73% is pretty deep, but not deep enough to make it dark outside. Considering how a child's mind works, I'd guess that you were aware that there was an eclipse that day, and when some clouds moved in and things got a bit darker, perhaps you thought that was the eclipse.
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  5. #65
    Subversively normal skypigeon's Avatar
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    I'm guessing 1970 is the one. I'd have been six. That would make the most sense.

    All I remember is I was inside, no one said anything about an eclipse to me (like I'd have paid attention at that age anyway), and it got what seemed nighttime-dark in the middle of the day.

  6. #66
    iLl-enfORmed yOKel Ren Butler's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by skypigeon View Post
    I'm guessing 1970 is the one. I'd have been six. That would make the most sense.

    All I remember is I was inside, no one said anything about an eclipse to me (like I'd have paid attention at that age anyway), and it got what seemed nighttime-dark in the middle of the day.


    Although 71% obscuration won't make it like nighttime, perhaps combined with heavy cloud cover (storms?) it could seem like night. But I'd lean toward a bad storm. There was a tornado near Gosport on 6/24/73 in the mid-afternoon -- that could certainly make it seem like night.

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    Quote Originally Posted by skypigeon View Post
    I'm guessing 1970 is the one. I'd have been six. That would make the most sense.

    All I remember is I was inside, no one said anything about an eclipse to me (like I'd have paid attention at that age anyway), and it got what seemed nighttime-dark in the middle of the day.
    Perhaps checking biblical records might be in order for someone of your age.


  8. #68
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    Quote Originally Posted by skypigeon View Post
    Hmmm. Looks like a road trip to St. Joseph may be in the cards.
    Atchison may be the best location on the Kansas side of the river. Both the airport and the college are hosting events.

  9. #69
    iLl-enfORmed yOKel Ren Butler's Avatar
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    A little over five weeks left.

    Who's made their plans?

    Just got our eclipse glasses in the mail last week.

  10. #70
    iLl-enfORmed yOKel Ren Butler's Avatar
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    I read that schools in Knoxville, Tennessee are closing on eclipse day. Very smart. Let the kids and staff enjoy the event.

  11. #71
    Insider Indyknut's Avatar
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    Still planning on being on the water at my lake property that day rain or shine. It's a mere few miles SW of the dead center line of totality. I could stay at home and watch from the yard but my house is around 15-18 miles to the NE of the dead center line.

  12. #72
    iLl-enfORmed yOKel Ren Butler's Avatar
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    What does the accuweather billion-day forecast say for your house that day?

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    Here, I'll post our prognosticator, Fox 2's Dave Murray's August forecast he made back in May. He covers all the bases so when he grades himself on the accuracy of the forecast he's rarely off the mark.

    August 2017

    August is the month to slow down and take it easy. If you don’t, the summer season can quickly pass you by. Vacation time comes to an end, high school sports kick into high gear, and by mid to late month the school bells are ringing once. Time flies and by mid-August we are saying, ‘What happen to the three months of summer.’

    The developing el Niño is still only a watcher in the month of August. I just don’t think it is a big factor. But it is developing and that means we are coasting in the month of August. Ocean temps are slow to respond to changes and that's why el Niño is just a watcher. It’s looking like a hot month, but a typical hot August. I think there will be one or two cooler runs at us and that will result in temperatures for August being very close to average. I have no concerns about record heat but plenty of 90° plus and a run at 100° plus for a day or two. Either way you look at it, the start of high school and college sports will be a challenge at times.

    What about the patterns for rain and thunderstorms? Wet weather is looking rather limited for much of the month. It may be a little late summer drought settling in with below average rainfall expected. Even with 2 to 3 shots of thunderstorms, the rainfall totals will struggle when we add up the numbers. The drier weather may have a late season effect on the corn and soybean crops and on hay production. There is one catch to my thinking on the August rainfall patterns and that's a chance that tropical development in the western Gulf of Mexico. The waters in the Gulf are very warm and that is a concern in late summer for a tropical spin up. If something does pull itself together, this will greatly alter the rainfall numbers for this August. That’s an impossible call in a long term forecast, especially in the third month of the summer season. Just a little disclaimer to put on the table.
    So far his June and July forecasts have been off the mark.

    I went to weather underground and went back 5 years for Aug 21st. Typically it's been anywhere from 84 to 95 degrees. Low humidity and dew points. Most years it was clear with at most some scattered clouds. As for anyone attempting to project that far into the future on a forecast? Sorry, I'm not buying it.

  14. #74
    iLl-enfORmed yOKel Ren Butler's Avatar
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    I don't see any problem forecasting a trend out that far, but I agree that forecast is too specific 90 days out. Not sure why he does that. I think it gives meteorology a bad name.

    Forecasts 1-2 weeks out around here have been quite good lately, but there was one flat-out miss on a short-term forecast earlier this week. Our rain chances were literally 0% I think on Wednesday, and we got a pretty good soaking late in the day.

    But they foresaw today's cooling trend many days ago. Their misses are few enough that I still have a lot of confidence overall.

  15. #75
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ren Butler View Post
    I don't see any problem forecasting a trend out that far, but I agree that forecast is too specific 90 days out. Not sure why he does that. I think it gives meteorology a bad name.

    Forecasts 1-2 weeks out around here have been quite good lately, but there was one flat-out miss on a short-term forecast earlier this week. Our rain chances were literally 0% I think on Wednesday, and we got a pretty good soaking late in the day.

    But they foresaw today's cooling trend many days ago. Their misses are few enough that I still have a lot of confidence overall.
    I think the problem is you're not only attempting to forecast for a day a month out but also a pretty narrow time window within that day.

  16. #76
    iLl-enfORmed yOKel Ren Butler's Avatar
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    There's no way you can do either.

    If somebody wanted to say "August will start dry and slightly warmer than average," that's the best they could do at this point, IMO. Even then, a week-long cool and wet stretch wouldn't necessarily mean it was wrong.


    The missed forecast I was talking about was a few hours out, which IMO qualifies as a complete miss.

  17. #77
    Quote Originally Posted by Ren Butler View Post
    A little over five weeks left.

    Who's made their plans?

    Just got our eclipse glasses in the mail last week.
    My parents live in the total eclipse area, we plan to visit them that weekend and stay over an extra day and let the kids miss school (Ours start August 8)
    El Grillo Cantor

  18. #78
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cri Cri View Post
    My parents live in the total eclipse area, we plan to visit them that weekend and stay over an extra day and let the kids miss school (Ours start August 8)
    Where do they live? Are you willing to drive (perhaps toward home) and look for clearer skies if they get clouded out?

    I use this visible satellite, which has a loop feature:

    https://www.aviationweather.gov/sate...n=evv&type=vis

    Make sure you don't use the infrared option on any satellite pages! That's good for storm clouds or nighttime clouds only.

  19. #79
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ren Butler View Post
    Who's made their plans?
    Staying in St Louis the night before. Heading to centre line early that morning.
    "An emphasis was placed on drivers with road racing backgrounds which meant drivers from open wheel, oval track racing were at a disadvantage. That led Tony George to create the IRL." -Indy Review 1996

  20. #80
    Need to order my glasses, but we have arrangements to watch it from a private farm in Torrington WY. Fortunately our nearest line of sight is one of the least densely populated areas along the path, but I'm sure I'm not the only one in Denver with the idea of heading up that way. But I'm really looking forward to the 2045 eclipse... our house is in the path of totality for that one

  21. #81
    Quote Originally Posted by Ren Butler View Post
    Where do they live? Are you willing to drive (perhaps toward home) and look for clearer skies if they get clouded out?

    I use this visible satellite, which has a loop feature:

    https://www.aviationweather.gov/sate...n=evv&type=vis

    Make sure you don't use the infrared option on any satellite pages! That's good for storm clouds or nighttime clouds only.
    They live in Dunlap, TN, right on the edge of totality. We'd be willing to drive, of course. They have good friends in Pikeville and Crossville, and Tennessee Tech in Cookeville is an official NASA viewing station. My mother and I were talking about this today. She is on the local library board and they voted on allocating funds to buy the viewing glasses this past week.

    We were also talking about the last one I really remember, but determined it wasn't the one in 1979, but the annular eclipse of May 30, 1984. I remember how eerily dark it was (but not total) and the pattern of shadows of the leaves on the ground. Since trees were in leaf It couldn't have been the Feb 1979 one. This was it and it went across the SE United States, but the moon was too far out to cast a total shadow.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Solar_...f_May_30,_1984

  22. #82


    Found this, where they live is in the 20-30 second area of totality, while their friends house is in the 2 minute 30 second band. My (retired) dad works part time at the Fall Creek Falls Golf Course and that also could be a great place to go.

  23. #83
    iLl-enfORmed yOKel Ren Butler's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cri Cri View Post
    Found this, where they live is in the 20-30 second area of totality, while their friends house is in the 2 minute 30 second band. My (retired) dad works part time at the Fall Creek Falls Golf Course and that also could be a great place to go.
    Yeah, you don't have to drive very far from the graze line to greatly increase totality. Once you're halfway to the center line, the duration doesn't increase very much more. That's why I'm not too worried about being right on the center line.

    I'd give up a half minute of totality if it means an unobstructed southern exposure and no clouds!

  24. #84
    iLl-enfORmed yOKel Ren Butler's Avatar
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    One thing that's interesting about that map is how some of the timing lines near the center don't appear to be perfectly parallel. I wonder if that prediction is so precise that it accounts for mountains and hills on the edge of the moon!

  25. #85
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ren Butler View Post
    A little over five weeks left.

    Who's made their plans?

    Just got our eclipse glasses in the mail last week.
    Taking the day off and heading to Mammoth Caves. Going to see the eclipse, then go back in the dark to do some spelunking.

  26. #86
    That great American eclipse website has some pretty detailed stats on expected visitation in each area. They're expecting 700-3000 people just a bit north of where we will be (we're not quite in the center but still in the 2minutes of totality range) Across the border in Nebraska there's a place where the estimate is 38-153 people
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  27. #87
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    We may be on our way to the Pacific coast from Minnesota in our RV by 21 August. We could be in the path but having seen a total eclipse and some partials I may not bother unless it is extremely opportune. However, we plan to take an upper route through North Dakota and Montana on the way.
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  28. #88
    iLl-enfORmed yOKel Ren Butler's Avatar
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    I had been putting off booking a hotel in Evansville in case plans changed. Since the last time I checked, inventory has dwindled significantly. There aren't a lot of cities that size just north of that portion of the path of totality. Perhaps a lot of people coming from the north had the same idea we did.

    Long story short, we just booked our hotel with a pool for the kids for the night before the eclipse.

  29. #89
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    Here's a pretty good map

    http://xjubier.free.fr/en/site_pages...DMAP%27&OMap=0

    You can pick a spot and it will show you the duration from the start to end including start to end of totality. It looks like the max totality location is just WSW of the I-57/I-24 junction in southern Illinois. The actual area there is pretty remote. It does look like I-24 would be a good place to position yourself if it looks like clouds will be a problem north. The highway pretty much runs parallel to the totality path from Southern Illinois all the way to Nashville.

    Mt. Vernon, Carbondale, Marion and Metropolis Illinois all are fairly big towns with significant hotel accommodations though I'll bet they're probably full up by now. Paducah, KY is another city along the path as is Clarksville and Hopkinsville KY.

  30. #90
    iLl-enfORmed yOKel Ren Butler's Avatar
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    I just realized that the longest duration is just about the same length as an Indy 500 qualifying run!

    And, like that, you wouldn't be able to perceive the difference between a slightly shorter qualifying run/eclipse duration a few miles away.

    I have a feeling too many people will chase a few extra seconds and sacrifice visibility in the process.

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