2024 Solar Eclipse

Total Solar Eclipse 2024

April 8th is fast approaching and if you are wondering about the upcoming solar eclipse, we have some information for you! A solar eclipse is always such a cool “coincidence.” It’s made possible by the fact that our Sun is about 400 times bigger than our Moon but it also just so happens to be about 400 times further away.

The 2024 eclipse will cross the United States but our area (Southwest Wisconsin) does not fall into what is called the “line of totality.” That does not mean we still won’t get an amazing show from our own backyard. At it’s peak, the Sun will still be between 80-90% covered by the Moon! You should know, that if you wish for the full effect of the eclipse, you’ll need to travel to somewhere in the line of totality as even an area where 99% of the Sun is covered by the moon, it will only appear a little darker, about the equivalent of a cloudy day.

Many of our StarSplitter members will be traveling south to get a view of the total eclipse so as of now there are no plans to have an event at the park but you are more than welcome to get out your eclipse glasses and take in the partial eclipse on the Huser Observatory grounds at Wyalusing State Park.

The partial eclipse in Wisconsin is set to start at approximately 12:48pm and it will end around 3:23pm. The best time for our corner of Southwest Wisconsin will be about 1:50pm.

The last major eclipse to cross the country was back in August 2017 and many of our StarSplitter members traveled to be in the line of totality. I traveled to Missouri and unfortunately met clouds and rain but it was still an awesome experience. Here is a time-lapse video from that day.

This year I will not be able to travel as I am a teacher and track coach who has school and a meet that day. We are planning some eclipse activities at school and even bought plenty of glasses so each student and staff member can look up! It should make for a great educational experience.

I know our resident astrophotography guru, Brian, has traveled to photograph other eclipses and has some amazing photos that he will probably share in the coming weeks.

Regardless of where you are, make sure you have the proper eye protection before enjoying the eclipse. One you’ve made sure you have the right eyewear you just need to pick your spot, hope for clear skies, and sit back and enjoy the show!

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