December 4 2021

Applying what we know about geographical shifts after one saros and the several examples mentioned above, it is obvious that this eclipse, linked to that on November 23, 2003, must also be over the Antarctic and so is not an attractive proposition.

So you want to see a total solar eclipse. Where should you go? Given an unlimited budget, you have a choice of locations in southern Africa or Australia late in 2002. Turkey is likely the best bet in 2006. The Great Wall of China in 2008 is a must-do, and you could go back to the coast of that country, or India, in 2009. Easter Island with its monolithic carved heads gazing perennially at the rising Sun is the only place to be for the 2010 eclipse; similarly Australia's Great Barrier Reef in 2012. For a radical climate change head for the Faeroe Islands near the spring equinox in 2015, and then don your tropical vestments again for Indonesia in 2016. After that it's Chile or Argentina in both 2019 and 2020.

An unlimited travel budget would not only be nice, but virtually a necessity if you wanted to complete that itinerary. American readers, however, have a stay-at-home opportunity in 2017, and doubtless many aficionados will have their own favored spots in mind already. My pick of a place from which to view it would the Grand Tetons. A map showing the path of that eclipse (and all other total solar eclipses crossing North America until 2050) is shown in Figure 15-8, for your own long-term planning.

The good news for the United States is that after the 38-year hiatus since 1979, when only parts of Oregon,Washington, Idaho, Montana, and North Dakota were crossed, there will only be another 7 years to wait until the next one. On April 8, 2024 there will be another total solar eclipse and it is a long one. With a 120-mile-wide track this four-minute event will pass centrally over Mexico, then Texas (including Dallas) and a chunk of the Midwest before reaching Cleveland, and then Buffalo and Montreal.

There is another peculiarity one might note about the April 2024 eclipse. Back in Chapter 11 we discussed how certain locations get more than their fair share of eclipses, focusing on Nantucket Island. We saw above that the maximum duration of the August 2017 eclipse will occur over Kentucky. Now refer to our North American eclipse map, Figure 15-8. It happens that the track for the 2024 eclipse crosses that for 2017 just to the west of there, mostly over southern Illinois, around the confluence of the Ohio and the Mississippi Rivers. This means that the good people of Carbondale will be so fortunate as to get not only the near-

FIGURE 15-8. The ground tracks for all total solar eclipses crossing North America through to 2050.

longest eclipse totality in 2017, but also another event less than seven years later. Perhaps this is more than fair recompense for having the name of their state spelled incorrectly in Figure 10-1.

After April 2024, Alaska is the place to head in 2033 ifyou can stand the weather at the end of March. In August 2044 Montana and North Dakota are again lucky, although further north into Canada one will have a better view, lasting just over two minutes; this time it will be the mosquitoes rather than the snow you would need to battle. Just 354 days later, on August 12, 2045, the United States will be treated to a real humdinger of an eclipse, the track arriving over northern California and then following a track parallel to that of 2017 before it blankets most of Florida on departure. This one will be a beauty, with a track up to 160 miles wide and duration just over six minutes.

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