For the first time in 38 years, the shadow of a total solar eclipse will cross the US

It's already being called the Great American Eclipse, and it's coming on August 21, 2017. Now, it's "Heads Up! in Jackson, Wyoming so they can handle the crowds.

 

For the first time in 38 years, the shadow of a total solar eclipse will cross the lower 48 of the United States. It will begin in the northwestern United States as the shadow of the moon falls on Oregon and makes its way southeast across Idaho, Wyoming, Nebraska, Kansas, Missouri, Illinois, Kentucky, Tennessee, Georgia and the Carolinas.

NASA ,Getty Images

 

Jackson, Wyoming is  directly in its path and the event is already proving to be very popular and is causing some pre-planning to handle the crowds.

“Teton County officials are setting up management plans to prepare for the large turnout expected for next year’s total solar eclipse. The emergency management crews are already planning a response for an estimated 40,000 people during the eclipse next August. Jackson is right in the path and Teton County Officials say they will be on the lookout for illegal campers and that many hotels are already booked. Grocery stores have also been notified to stock up on bottled water and gas stations to keep their tanks full.” – CBS5

NASA / Google

 

In a total eclipse, when the apparent diameter of the moon is larger than that of the sun and blocks all direct sunlight. Day turns to night, birds go silent, and you can stare directly at the moon with the sun behind it without any eye protection. (You still have to be careful though! Cover your eyes before the sun re-emergesHere's a complete guide to eclipse eye safety from NASA.)

 

NASA says “you can be hundreds of miles from the theoretical point of Greatest Duration and still enjoy totality lasting within a fraction of a second of the maximum possible (as long as you stay within several miles of the central line). It's much more important to watch the weather forecasts a day or two before the eclipse and choose a location with the best chance of a cloud-free sky during the eclipse. Even in Oregon, the total eclipse still lasts 2 minutes. Good weather is the key to successful eclipse viewing - better to see a shorter eclipse from clear sky that a longer eclipse under clouds.”

 

An excellent source for weather prospects for upcoming eclipses is meteorologist Jay Anderson's Eclipse Weather Page.