| sun's corona during total eclipse. August 21, 2017. |

After a 3am start from Roseburg, Oregon, we arrived at Ankeny National Wildlife Refuge at the center of the path of totality of the “Great American Eclipse” well before sunrise, along with hundreds of other excited eclipse-watchers.

Oregon Sunrise

| oregon sunrise. August 21, 2017. |

This solar eclipse was particularly exciting for Americans because it was the first total eclipse viewable from the US mainland since 1979.

Eclipse Composite Image

| composite image of partial eclipse phases and totality. August 21, 2017. |

This was my first time experiencing a total eclipse, and it really is true that a photo or a description does not do the experience justice. I’d read about the darkness, a sunset on every horizon, a sudden drop in temperature, but it is something that must be seen firsthand to truly be understood. While I had read that animals and birds would often go silent at the moment of totality, as the moon slipped into place in front of the sun the onlookers dotting the hills of the refuge erupted into cheers and applause, jumping up and down and turning in circles to fully experience the 2 minutes and 20 seconds of midday twilight that nature had gifted us. How incredible to be a part of this collective celebration of the beauty of nature.

Solar Flares

| solar flares. August 21, 2017. |

The experience was truly unforgettable. I might be an eclipse chaser now. See y’all in Texas in 2024.

Sunglasses Eclipse

| pop quiz: is wearing every single pair of sunglasses found in my car's console suitable protection for eclipse-viewing? |