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Tuesday, 09 April 2024


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Here’s a photo that Peter McKinnon did for Red Bull. His description of the planning for this is worth reading as well.


Back in 1999 when the UK had its last total eclipse, we excitedly jumped into our cars, loaded up the tents and drove down to Cornwall and set up with hundreds of others in a field. When the moment came, it was horizon to horizon dense cloud, nothing to be seen...except the horizon lit up with the reflections of thousands of camera flashes bouncing from the bottom of the clouds!

The next one is in 2090, looking forward to that one...

Hello Mike
I’m right across from you on the shore of Lake Ontario.Although we were socked in with clouds, all the other symptoms of a total eclipse took place. Total darkness, birds stopped singing, the temperature dropped about 5 deg C. As totality passed, it was like a veil being dragged across the sky. The sun came out later in the afternoon.
Every street with access to the lake was packed with cars. My wife was just able to make it home on time to catch the event

According to the University of Arizona Flandrau Science Center & Planetarium, in Tucson we had 75% totality:


[That's pretty neat. A different take. I like it. --Mike]

We drove into Ohio, near Cleveland, and got lucky with the clouds. They were threatening but mostly high and thin.

After learning some lessons in 2017 I got some good close up shots this time around, but my wider shots of the whole area bathed in wierd darkness fell a bit short this time. Oh well.

My personal favorite is this one:


You can browse around that whole album and pick your own.

[You got some good ones! --Mike]

Elles technobabbles are brilliant



I traveled to Plattsburg NY to view totality with my kids. 5 hours up, 10 hours back. 100 mile traffic jam. NY was not ready for this.

We had a sunny day here in Ann Arbor, and were able to see the eclipse at 98% of totality which was really cool. It didn't get dark here but it was fascinating to watch the quality of light change around us. It looked like someone was turning down a dimmer switch on the light or on our vision, so kind of like dusk except there were still distinct shadows present. I could have seen 100% totality if I had driven one hour south to Toledo, but didn't want to fight the traffic. Very cool experience

The fifth image by Jack (unshown in your post) is quite amazing where you can see solar flares around the edges of the moon. It seems impossible that the moon is almost the perfect size and distance from the earth to so exactly block out the size of the sun!

I'm a bit perplexed about your recent praise of the iphone's night mode, along with the last two examples that look dreadful... Might be i just got a new monitor that's too big, but really i can't enjoy looking at them.
I hope you're doing regular work with your BW contraption; pictures from that do indeed look good to me.

Here at the heart of the periphery, we're lucky if we see a clear sky. It’s year-round Vit-D supplements and an appreciation for clouds and Gore-tex

This video from mlb.com was pretty good:


Amazingly, northeast Ohio wasn't cloudy and it was 71 degrees!

I'll send a couple of photos to your contact e-mail address.

I thought of you, Mike, while processing this one -- I remember a post from you many moons ago about your preference for "subtle color", while most of my work is anything but (because I mostly shoot fireworks). https://www.flickr.com/photos/mark_sirota/53644978896

I thought I planned carefully for my eclipse excursion. Google told me that my destination (the ruins of a pre-Revolutionary War fort on the southern shore of Lake Champlain) was 3 hours and 42 minutes away. To be safe, I allocated 7 hours for getting there plus extra for sight-seeing and photography at the fort before the eclipse, but that was not enough as I failed to account for the fact that:

1) the population density where I now live is approximately infinity times greater than where I grew up in the rural Midwest;

2) what felt like 97% of the residents of southern New England foolishly, like me, thought they could drive north on the morning of the eclipse; and

3) interstate highways somehow plug completely once a critical mass of traffic is exceeded.

My (poorly) planned route put me on the interstate for maybe 20 miles in southern Vermont and after about half of that segment the traffic slowed and then... stopped. I don't know how long it took to reach the next exit, but I got through several podcasts and my timeline was spoiled.

Interestingly, once on two-lane Vermont state highways the still considerable traffic was able to move at the speed limit. I need a traffic engineer or maybe a psychologist to explain to me how one lane of travel can move literally (and I mean literally) 100x faster than two lanes of travel with a proportionally equal number of cars.

The delay put my original target out of reached so I headed to what I thought was the closest area of the line of totality. As I watched the clock counting down I thought I was far enough and pulled into a gravel parking lot with a bunch of folks staring at the sky. I watched the last couple minutes of the moon covering the sun through my glasses, but must have been just a hair short of full totality as it never got very dark (certainly no stars visible in the dusky sky) and when I popped off my glasses the sun was still quite bright. The total period of apparent "totality" through my glasses was only 15-20 seconds.

Then it was time to turn around and face the traffic again. All told it was a 14+ hour day to drive 350 miles and *almost* see the full glory of the eclipse.

When I finally made it home my wife described what she saw from our back yard and it wasn't much different than what I saw. I guess that's why she's the smart one in the relationship.

[What an epic saga! On the good side, you probably won't soon forget the experience. And hey, at least you tried. --Mike]

Having traveled to Cleveland, we got semi-decent weather (high, thin, clouds). I got some pretty decent totality pictures (3 flares visible for sure, and some change in the flares across the time of totality), just working hand-held with my 40-150 (80-300 FF eqv.) with a 1.4x (so 420mm effective overall).

My second total eclipse, though the weather at the first (2017) was even worse. It really does get quite dark overhead (and brighter around the horizon, rather strange), but for me the big kick is when that first tiny bit of the sun sneaks back out, and instantly it's day rather than night.

Eugène Atget, 1912:


I hope you’re hearing some of Elle Cordova’s music. After years of performing as Reina del Cid, usually with Toni Lindgren, she has decided to use her given name. The YouTube cover of Electric Light Orchestra’s “Strange Magic” offers a sample of her straight-on singing style, but there are many more - often compelling stuff when singing ensemble. https://youtu.be/HMKjkFx41rI?si=E6BDpQM9fyWeetIB

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