Road Trip 2024: Eclipse Edition

Back in 2017 I made a road trip with Alpha to view an eclipse as it passed over Illinois.  (We got tangled in traffic before we reached the path of totality, but it was a good trip overall.)

When we got home I started planning our next eclipse trip, so that pesky traffic wouldn’t prevent me from seeing totality.  Enter the six-year plan leading up to the latest eclipse in 2024, with the path of totality passing over Niagara Falls.

eclipse path map from NASA
NASA’s map of the eclipse’s path

We arrived a couple of days before the eclipse, and left the day after.  Traffic would not be a problem this time.  We had hotel rooms, cameras, snacks, and chairs.

The one thing you can’t control is the weather.  It was cloudy.

Most of the path of totality was cloudy, as a matter of fact.  A relatively short swath from Vermont to the Atlantic was mostly clear, but the rest of the path had varying levels of poor weather, including some nasty storms.

We eked by with a mostly cloudy experience, which had a pleasant side-effect: filtering wasn’t required for most of the time.

Approaching totality of the eclipse
The one artificially filtered picture I took. The rest were filtered by the cloud deck.
landscape during totality
During peak totality the sun and moon were completely obscured by clouds, so I took a few photos of the landscape
solar eclipse totality viewed through clouds
The clouds thinned out just enough during totality for me to catch a glimpse of what appears to be the corona, just before the moon slid out of the way. It could also just be glow from terrestrial clouds.
border of darkness and sunlight
As totality came to an end, we could momentarily see the border between darkness and light over the Canadian side of Niagara
sun peeking from behind the moon after totality
The clouds add some drama to the scene as the sun slides out from behind the moon again
more sun peeking from behind the moon after totality
A few minutes post-totality, the moon’s shadow leaves a Cheshire-cat-like visage