The Great Eclipse Adventure
An historic full eclipse of the sun is supposed to happen on August 21st 2017, beginning in northern Oregon and crossing the entire country. We were already planning to drive down to Sonoma for a visit with Norman and Deirdre beginning on the morning of the 21st of August (2017), so it was an easy decision to leave a day earlier and see if we could work out the heavy traffic logistics to see this eclipse. After much searching on the internet, we found a room in eastern Portland in a Motel 6 for August 20th. Because of this eclipse, rooms across northern Oregon were only available at scalpers rates (thousands per night), so we were really lucky to find this one. We arrived at our Motel 6 early on the 20th, and got to bed early. Up at 3:30 in the morning, and on the road by 4:00 am.
Even while in Washington we were seeing highway signs warning of the heavy traffic ahead because of the eclipse.
At 4:30 in the morning highway signs were warning drivers to not park on the highway to observe the eclipse. Traffic at this early hour was moderately heavy.
After some searching in the area south of Salem, we happened upon this perfect spot in the town of Albany, Oregon. It was still dark when we parked next to this schoolyard. Some sleep in the car. The eclipse didn't start until about 9:30, with total eclipse around 10:20, so we had lots of time to loaf.
The schoolyard was a perfect venue for this. Soft grass.
Lots of time to goof off...
Finally the start of the eclipse. With the special glasses we could see the moon slowly entering into the disc of the sun.
Starting to get dark. About half the sun now covered.
Almost total. Very erie. Temperature dropped about ten or fifteen degrees. I had to run to the car for a sweater.
The NASA chase plane curves into the chase pattern for following in the shadow of the eclipse.
Suddenly, its dark! Streetlights come on. We can take off our glasses and look directly at the moon and halo of the sun. Only for about a minute and a half.
The full eclipse. An amazing sight. The corona made up of the sun's plasma gases shows as white against the black sky.
End of the eclipse as the sun begins to peek out on the right side of the moon. Glasses back on! Once in a lifetime must see!