Information from our friends inAlbuquerque
USA States touched by the path of
Timetable for the eclipse: Friday 18
Saturday 19 and Sunday 20August 2017
Monday 21August 2017 - before sunrise
The majority of this total solar eclipse takes place over the
continental USA. The maximum duration of the eclipse is
just over 2 minutes 41 seconds in southern Illinois near
Carbondale. Greatest Eclipse occurs near Hopkinsville,
Kentucky, a little over 100 miles (160 kms) further along the
eclipse path. Duration is slightly
shorter at the Greatest Eclipse point
due to the lunar profile.
Nebraska, Kansas, Missouri, Illinois,
Kentucky, Tennessee, North Carolina,
Georgia, South Carolina.
Almost everyone who plans to see the
eclipse will be in position. People who
have converged on those sites to view
the eclipse will begin the countdown to
eclipse day, as final preparations are
made to ensure that photography
equipment, filters, chairs, tables,
telescopes, TV monitors, webcast
equipment, hats and sunscreen are all
at the ready for the big day!
Last-minute weather forecasts are
checked, and anyone with the slightest
fear of clouds on eclipse day will invoke
their travel contingencies. Weather
monitoring will proceed around the
clock, with live updates issued hourly
so as to best prepare eclipse-chasers
who will need to move at a moment’s notice. Nothing will
stand in the way of seeing the eclipse!
Last-minute travellers will get in place, as well as those who
have had to fight their own travel glitches, and make
alternate arrangements to get here. Some will have missed
their pre-eclipse tours, but that’s OK – as long as they’re in
the path by Sunday night, all is OK. The worry can then
focus on equipment, mental preparedness and weather.
Tomorrow is the big day, and nothing can go wrong.
No human action can disrupt the incessant dance of the
cosmos. As predicted by astronomers decades in advance,
the shadow arrives with perfect accuracy, and touches
down in the north Pacific Ocean at 16:48:33 UT*, at local
sunrise. (At that spot, the sun will actually rise while
eclipsed. This is a sight few people - even veteran eclipsechasers
- have seen, and from what we hear, it is quite
A minute later, the entire shadow (the ‘umbral cone’) will
have made landfall - er, ocean-fall - and will be racing across
the surface of the water at supersonic speed. Except for
folks on ships at sea, and the occasional ocean-dwelling
critter who dares to venture too near the surface, nothing
sentient will note the passing of the umbra – until land gets
in the way.
Albuquerque should be well into the so-called Monsoon
Season. Normally, August is the most prolific month for
rainfall, with moisture coming in from the
West Coast of Mexico.
You can probably expect highs in the
upper 80's F (30+ C) and lows overnight
in the low 60's F (15+ C).
One thing Northern New Mexico will not
be is humid. It can be raining and the
humidity is only 60%. Our normal
afternoon humidities are in the 15%-
20% range. But clear skies make the sun
feel much hotter than in ‘hazy’ areas of
the country. Hat, sunscreen, and water
are the necessities. Bring a collapsible
umbrella. No need for jeans, but you
may want a light jacket or long-sleeved
shirt if you stay out late at night.
Visit places in the morning to early
afternoon, then take a pool/siesta break
and then back out in the evening. A few
hours in the elevation and dry heat will
make you tired and ready for a rest!
· Return flight – cheapest approx.
NZ$1825 return per person for 2
people but less for more bookings –
NZ$1318 for 6 people. I can only book 360 days in
advance, so I cannot guarantee this.
· Motels seem to be from $72 per night but I am getting the
locals to do a bit more checking on this and we may be
much luckier, so about US$1600 (NZ$1900) for 30 days.
· 7-seater van hire for 4 weeks approximately US$2000
including collision damage insurance. Cost for 6 people
therefore (assuming we take an Albuquerquian with us),
US$333 each (NZ$400). Of course prices will alter a bit for
shorter stays but they may go up as well and don’t include
fuel costs for the vans.
Albuquerque is not on the path of totality so should not
suffer massive price hikes because of that but we will have
to travel to watch the eclipse.
Under current currency conversion conditions that would
mean an all-up cost of approximately NZ$4125 plus
spending money each, so probably closer to $6000 each. If
you commit yourself, then you will have to begin saving now.
You have 38 months to save up that figure, so $158 per
month per person, starting now for the trip. Please check my
figures: it is a good time to point out any errors. As I receive
more information, I will keep you updated.