I wanted to write a post on the Eclipse as soon as I returned from Madras, OR but I decided to wait a few months. The planning for the trip was a total last-minute decision and the preparation was fast but precise. I hadn’t seen a total solar eclipse before so I was really pumped up to drive for almost 9 hours to reach the point from where I could see totality. Even my Snapchat feed was excited for me!
If you are reading this post and missed the big day (Aug 21, 2017) I highly recommend planning your next big trip to Dallas on April 8, 2024, when the next total solar eclipse is due in the United States. Let me begin by explaining a little about what an Eclipse really is. A total Solar Eclipse occurs when the moon comes between the sun and the earth in the perfect alignment causing darkness over the earth surface. During totality, the sky goes almost as dark as the night.
The path of totality of the eclipse spanned around 40 miles from west to east across the United States and states of Oregon, Idaho, Wyoming, Nebraska, Missouri and Florida among other states.
The total solar eclipse in Madras, Oregon lasted a little over two minutes. There were a million people who traveled thousands of miles to see the eclipse and the spectacle, was beyond anything I have seen before. It was impossible to find a hotel or even a decent spot to park your car or set camp. Madras is a very small town in the middle of Oregon and the county doesn’t get a lot of tourists. We managed to find a spot on Airbnb to camp out for the night. Going around downtown Madras in the evening, we knew that traffic going back was going to be ridiculous but hey, it was so worth it!
On the day of the eclipse, we woke up bright and early, packed up our tent and started looking for a decent spot to park and take it all in. We parked by a seemingly less crowded road overlooking acres of farmland and waited for the eclipse to begin. Directly looking at the Solar Eclipse can burn your retina and damage your eyesight. Everyone should wear anti-radiation glasses to protect your eyes. The crescent sun seen in the image above is how the eclipse looked about 20 minutes into the eclipse.
When the eclipse reached totality, it was beyond unreal. The sky went super dark and you could literally see starts close to the sun and all around. I even spotted a few constellations during the brief 2 minutes of totality.
Animals around us could sense something unusual going on too. You could hear the birds chirping and the horses neighing. It was really interesting to hear crickets in the middle of the day!
As we reached the end of totality, we caught a glimpse of the diamond ring. The entire experience was really something you read about and not experience.
All in all, it was one of the most unfathomable astounding naturally occurring celestial events that I have seen and I highly urge you to catch the next one!