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So you're planning to travel to see the total eclipse? Uh oh

10 August 2017, 12:43 | Myrtle Vega

A map of the path of the

A map of the path of the eclipse

Way back 23 years ago, when I was in my mid-30s and my daughters were still in grade school, I was out of work for a time, living on unemployment and enjoying fishing in the afternoons. There is a brief phase during a total solar eclipse when it is safe to look directly at the sun.

You will be able to see the spectacular colors and light of the sun's atmosphere, a sight revealed to us only during a total solar eclipse.

Other things compounding this problem are people like me, and the time of year. I remembered how fun it was to have her in the vehicle with me, just talking about ordinary things.

The last time a total solar eclipse was visible from the continental USA was about 40 years ago, on February 26, 1979. That's a narrow band that crosses the country diagonally from OR to SC. This event was an annular eclipse, meaning that the moon was positioned further away from the earth and did not completely block out the sunlight. Once you've seen totality, you will have a bittersweet emotional - you will be giddy at what you just experienced.

Anyone outside of the path of totality will need to wear the glasses for the entire duration of the eclipse.

The path of totality is only about 75 miles wide.

Ulrike protects her eyes with special glasses to watch a solar eclipse in front of the Brandenburg Gate in Berlin on March 20, 2015. Mos of the country will see a partial eclipse. You want to be in an open area without a ton of tall trees and buildings.

On property along the Nantahala River, Mainspring will provide restrooms, yard games, eclipse-viewing glasses and water. Aurora branch manager John Harris told me August 5 they had passed out more than 200 sets, reserving a few dozen for patrons who drop in on the day of the eclipse.

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Cheyenne, Wyoming (183% increase) - Wyoming's capital city, considered America's rodeo and railroad capital, is a great place to base yourself for a few days, either for some eclipse viewing or simply to check out a historic corner of the country. What this means for sky watchers in southern Nevada, where there will be only a partial eclipse, is that there will not be any period of time at all during which the event will be safe to view without solar filters; and to view a total eclipse in the western U.S., they will have to travel north. Camping parks are at full capacity for the eclipse and there will be a viewing party on Dreher Island.

About 80 percent of the solar eclipse will be viewable from Frostburg, with the peak time being around 2:40 p.m. "It's where you lose the very center of your vision, so just using the approved glasses are really the only way to safely view the eclipse", the eye doctor said. And motorists on local streets need to pay special attention to pedestrians and cyclists, who may themselves be focused on the eclipse.

My plan is to go out with some friends for a long lunch at a restaurant with an outdoor patio.

Make sure you're watching the eclipse with proper glasses. You'd better have a hotel reservation, though.

The next total solar eclipse will be in 2024, so most of us will have another chance to see one!

As the big event gets closer, some schools have chose to close on August 21, simply because they can't handle the logistics of wrangling a thousand kids to watch the solar eclipse.

"Still, it will be dark for the afternoon", she said.

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