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Are You Ready for the Solar Eclipse?

eclipse

On April 8, a total solar eclipse will be seen across North America, in a diagonal line that stretches from Texas to Maine. It’s the last total solar eclipse that the continental United States is going to get until 2044, so you don’t want to miss it.

If you’re looking for somewhere to view the eclipse in the Northeast, try Maine, upstate and western New York, northern Vermont and northern New Hampshire. But even if you’re not directly in the path of totality, the partial eclipse will still be an incredible sight for our region.

To see the eclipse, you’re going to need good eye protection. Regular sunglasses are not strong enough. For the safest viewing, you want a pair of ISO-certified eclipse glasses. Check out these warnings and recommendations from the American Astronomical Society (AAS).

Here are a few AAS-approved options for safely viewing the eclipse. Make sure to buy them sooner rather than later!

Solar Eclipse Gear

LUNT SOLAR Premium Eclipse Glasses

This five-pack of eclipse glasses features a colorful design on its cardboard frames. They’re crafted to provide the viewer with a sharp, orange-tinted view of the sun. Buy them here.

Soluna Solar Eclipse Glasses

Don’t need that many? Grab a single pair of these solar eclipse glasses from Soluna. The scratch-resistant lenses and spacey cardboard frames are perfect for a view that’s out-of-this-world. Buy them here.

Smartphone Solar Imaging Photo Lenses

Want a memory to tide you over for the next 20 years? A normal phone won’t be able to take a great picture of the eclipse on its own, but you can instantly upgrade it with these smartphone lenses. They’re like eclipse glasses for your phone (just don’t use them for your actual eyes, they’re not protective enough). Press it between your phone and your phone case to go hands-free. Buy them here.

Celestron EclipSmart Safe Solar Eclipse Binoculars

Are you serious about getting a good look at our star? While you should never look at the sun through standard binoculars, Celestron EclipSmart Safe Solar Eclipse Binoculars are made for the job, allowing the viewer to safely see crystal-clear, white images of the sun, sunspots, transits and eclipses. These AAS-approved binoculars will ensure that you have a stunning eclipse experience, while keeping your eyes protected. Buy them here.

More Ways to View the Eclipse

If you miss your chance to grab a pair of eclipse sunglasses, there are still a lot of ways to safely view the solar eclipse. If you look closely, even the leaves of the trees will cast crescent-shaped projections onto the ground as the moon makes its way between the Earth and the sun.

Here’s great video from NPR about different viewing options:

Road Trip to the Eclipse

It’s not too late for last-minute adventurers to plan a trip to see the eclipse. But you have to act fast.

Where to go: According to AAA booking data, the Texas cities of Dallas, Austin, and San Antonio are the most popular destinations along the path of totality. Here in the Northeast, Buffalo, N.Y., offers an eclipse-viewing destination that’s closer to home and could make for a great road trip.

When and how to get there: The eclipse falls on a Monday, so many travelers will make a long weekend of the event with Saturday, April 6, expected to be a busy travel day. AAA car rental partner Hertz reports a 3,000% increase over last year in advance bookings for eclipse path cities for that Saturday. The eclipse also overlaps with Spring Break for many families across the U.S., so there will be even more travelers than usual on the move that weekend. Rent a car.

AAA booking data show hotels in the most popular cities along the path of totality are 48% more expensive during the eclipse weekend than they were that same time last year. AAA members can receive discounts at hotels across the country, including Hilton, Best Western, and Choice Hotels brands, all of which have locations in and around Buffalo. Book now.

How to stay safe: Travelers should expect heavier than normal traffic before and after the eclipse. AAA offers the following guidance for safe eclipse-viewing for those traveling on the roadways:

  • Keep your vehicle’s headlights on.
  • Put the sun visor down to block your view of the sun.
  • Don’t wear eclipse glasses while driving.
  • Don’t try to photograph or video the eclipse while driving.
  • Don’t pull over to the side of the road, highway, or interstate to view the eclipse – exit the roadway and park in a safe area away from traffic.
  • Be mindful of pedestrians who may be walking around with their eyes on the sky! 

What are your plans for eclipse day? Let us know in the comments below!

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One Thought on “Are You Ready for the Solar Eclipse?

  1. Wherever you are on the centerline of the eclipse, get to your chosen site EARLY!! If not, you probably will get stuck in traffic, so you may have no choice but to view in the non-moving ‘parking lot’ the road will become.

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