1) Look for, video, or write down "evening" ("Roosting") behavior of birds, bugs, other wildlife or farm animals.
G. Animal / People Behavior
2) In the last minute before totality, or the first minute after totality, watch for (or video) these shadow bands. (think of what you see with light on the bottom of a swimming pool on a sunny day).
1) Spread a white sheet out flat on the ground.
F. Shadow Bands - just a little on the bizarre side, a phenomenon rarely seen.
2) Photograph it or record the temps at various times before, during, and after eclipse. During totality the temp may drop 10 or more degrees. You may also note the wind picking up slightly.
1) Get a big thermometer, plant it in the sunlight nearby
3) Consider better/safer/more personal uses for your camera. Photo your surroundings before, during, and after. Even better, put your camera on a tripod and shoot video of you and your
2) So, during partial (crescent) phases, your camera (and your iPhone or other smartphone camera) will likely suffer damage if you point it to the sun much. The heat is
5) Shadow boxes (see C-1 above), cut viewing panel out at side near bottom
4) Interlacing fingers (gaps will allow sunlight to form crescents)
3) bring a Cheese grater !
2) bring a Kitchen Colander / Strainer !
1) two sheets of white cardboard, one with a hole (covered by aluminum foil-taped on, then pierced with a pin). Direct the pinhole between the sun and the other sheet of white board to
2) Telescope or binocular filters, or same for cameras. Because optics (telescopes, binoculars, cameras) gather and focus more light than your eyes can, they can be MUCH more dangerous.
1) Eclipse Glasses (some venues will provide these) or #14 welders glass, for views without magnification.
4) Bug spray
3) Shade or SUNSCREEN, hats, Sun-brellas, etc.
2) chairs, or blankets to lie on (Bring them!)
1) plenty of fluids / water, snacks
(DRAFT) (WORK IN PROGRESS)
Arrive as EARLY as possible. Traffic will be an issue, and PARKING may be just as difficult if you do not have a reservation and/or do not show up early. Plan extra time for traffic. Carpool (parking spots are precious, be kind). Make sure you know where you are going and have a dedicated/reserved place. Turning around, stopping traffic, and hunting for a new spot is NOT GOOD. Neither is pulling to the side of the road! We don't want anyone to get hurt. Just don't.
A. Safety, comfort for a mid-day in AUGUST
Things to bring to the eclipse. Remember, it is AUGUST!
5) Consider battery-operated fans, misters, things to keep cool.
6) Wear light colors (white, yellow, not black), thin / breathable fabrics.
7) White towels (to cover up equipment and other stuff, protect from getting too hot
8) Tape (duct tape, electrical tape) - when don't you need tape? Cover flash on cameras (camera flashes are very un-cool during totality)
9) Regular sunglasses (not for solar viewing, but of COURSE you need sunglasses in August!).
10) A notebook and/or drawing book for notes and sketches.
11) Pack in what you need, and please pack it all back out too. Trash included.
B. Eye protection (filter) - Looking at the sun "unprotected" with your naked eyes can produce retina burns (welders experience these, and they are painful and cause damage). Just like when you are outside on a normal day (the Eclipse doesn't make the sun any worse, it is just bad that people may try to look at it unprotected), try to remain cognizant that you should not look at the sun - unless you are protecting your eyesight.
A direct 'glimpse' of the unfiltered sun thru a telescope would cause serious damage to your eyes (retina) in a fraction of a second.
((NOTE: NO FILTER REQUIRED DURING THE precious 0.1 to 2.5 minutes of TOTALITY, when the moon completely covers the sun then))
((ALSO NOTE: If you can't see your own SHADOW, it is highly unlikely you can see the sun/eclipse with ANY method below))
C. Eye protection (projection) methods (use any or all for fun) during crescent phases (before and after totality)
project the sun's image.
6) Under trees, holes created by leaves will form crescents. Take a walk in the Park. Enjoy your natural surroundings. Look for pinhole crescents formed by the leaves.
7) Anyone with curly hair? Use their hair shadow to see crescents!8) ANYTHING with tiny holes! - - Take PICTURES of what you see (crescents).
D. Camera safety / issues
The big deal is to not waste time fudging with a camera during the precious time of TOTALITY. Trust us, your shots won't rival the professionals. Don't mis-use your precious time.1) Don't look thru the viewfinders without protection!! Okay to look on the back SCREENS, but use extreme caution not to look at the actual sun with your naked eyes while doing so.
simply too much. Consider using a pair of (ie. your friend's) ECLIPSE GLASSES as a filter for your camera lens. Hold the eclipse glasses up to the camera lens and shoot away.
Selfies of you and the sun won't work filtered or unfiltered, sorry, the sun is just too bright. However, you can do selfies with the projection method.
family/friends from 1 minute before totality thru 1 minute after.
4) Given the enormity of this event, it is VERY likely that cell tower band-width will be strained. Don't expect to have "signal" for sending or receiving video. Might even lose cell connections, so
be prepared to handle things without cell phones (meet up locations, times, back-up meet-ups). Text is likely to be okay, but voice connections may be tougher.
5) Of course, bring extra batteries, lens cleaner, etc.
E. Temperature change
2) "Interview" your family/friends of their feelings before and after they experience totality. It will be very emotional for many, and how they express emotions will differ wildly.
3) Video your family/friends/surroundings during the minute before totality, time during totality, and minute after totality. Put that iPhone or camera on a tripod and back away.
4) At about 15-30 minutes to totality, remember to get everyone to the bathroom that needs to go!!
H. Make records:
If you have any friends along the path of the eclipse call them and compare your times with them. You can see how fast the shadow of the moon travels (It is really fast). The moon's shadow is round, so if your friends also do this you may be surprised at the difference in start-stop times within just a few miles apart.
I. It gets dark during totality, but just how dark? The first magnitude star Regulus in Leo will be just a bit more than one degree to the east of the sun during totality. Did you see it? How soon before complete totality could you see it? Can you see any other stars during the eclipse? Draw what you see.
J. Did you see Baily's Beads/Diamond Ring? If so, draw a quick sketch to help you remember what you saw. The corona extends outward from the sun but can only be seen during an eclipse. How far out can you see the corona extend is solar diameters? Was it the same intensity in all directions or does it vary?
K. Sketch the sun every 15 minutes to show how fast the eclipse is progressing. Note any sunspots, if any are seen.
1) No time like the present. Document all the feelings you had during/after totality. Celebrate!
2) This is back to partial-eclipse. Do whatever you didn't do previously. (A thru F above)
3) Buy a tee-shirt / momentos!
4) Family photos!
5) Bathroom break for anyone who did not make a mad-dash in the 15-30 minutes prior to totality.
6) Post-totality won't be nearly as rushed. Many will try to leave quickly, but will be stuck in traffic. Stick around. Now there will be time to take photos with telescopes, and possibly thru telescopes
with your cameras/phones.
7) Consider evening plans nearby (wineries, Boone's Farm,
M. RESOURCES - get equipped! (single-power = 1x = your eyes with eclipse glasses - are all that is necessary to see and enjoy the eclipse, others can be fun too)
1) Eclipse Glasses - We recommend purchase from The Astronomical League ($1 ea) : https://store.astroleague.org/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=11&products_id=96
Or for more than 25: amazon.com/Rainbow-Symphony-Eclipse-Glasses
Or for hand-held "Viewers" instead of glasses: https://www.rainbowsymphonystore.com/collections/eclipse-glasses-safe-solar-viewers/products/solar-eclipse-viewer
(Some wearers of eyeglasses might prefer these over eclipse glasses)
2) Binoculars / Sun-oculars / telescope filters:
a. Dedicated solar-only 5x30 - https://explorescientificusa.com/collections/sun-catcher/products/solar-eclipse-sun-catcher-5x30-binoculars
b. Dedicated solar-only - 6x32 - https://luntsolarsystems.com/product/sunoculars-mini-yellow/
c. Dedicated solar-only -10x25 - http://www.celestron.com/browse-shop/astronomy/solar-observing/eclipsmart/eclipsmart-10x25-solar-binocular
d. Add-on filter for 60mm refractors (etc.) - http://www.celestron.com/browse-shop/astronomy/solar-observing/eclipsmart/eclipsmart-solar-filter-for-60mm-refractor
e. Build your own, or custom-made telescope filters: (be sure to test your work BEFORE the day of the eclipse!)
Fitting: Filter finder
Buying (USA) custom-made: Agena Astro - solar filters
How-to-make your own: http://agenaastro.com/media/documents/baader-making-a-solar-filter.pdf
Buy the film only: (5" square version shown) http://agenaastro.com/baader-astrosolar-film-visual-nd-5-5-127mm.html (do not use as "eclipse glasses" - needs a glass component)
Build a Sun Funnel https://www.astrosociety.org/tov/Build_a_Sun_Funnel2.pdf
Sun Gun http://www.sunguntelescope.com/MAIN.html
3) Projection viewers
b SolarScope: http://solarscopeusa.com/store/products/
4) Expensive stuff for the avid, allowing you to see more of the Sun's features.
a. Hydrogen Alpha scopes - http://www.meade.com/pst-telescopes.html
and - https://www.astronomics.com/ls50tha-50mm-f7-refractor-4mm-blocking-filter-pressure-tuning_p20193.aspx