Monday, April 8, 2024

Total Solar Eclipse

We slept until nearly 6 am then had more of the breakfast casserole for breakfast. We packed lunch and some snacks to take for the 2024 total solar eclipse viewing. Mark and I loaded lawn chairs in the car and we left a little after 8 am. We drove up I-75 to Cincinnati where we picked up I-275 then I-74 West into Indiana. 

We were planning to find a place in Greensburg, Indiana to see the eclipse since it would be in the range of totality. When we were about 30 minutes from Greensburg, we stopped at a rest area on I-74 near Batesville, Indiana. There were a number of people sitting in lawn chairs and preparing to watch the eclipse. We decided that the rest area would be an ideal spot for us so we picked a spot to put the lawn chairs. 

It was only 11 am when we arrived and the eclipse wasn’t predicted to start until after 2 pm but Mary and Cindy would take a walk then Mark and I would take a walk around the rest area. The temperature was warm but there was a nice breeze that felt really good. We chatted with a man near us with a solar telescope and digital camera. Two older ladies visited with us and took snapshots of our group. One of the ladies is from Union, KY near Florence and the other is from Beattyville in Eastern Kentucky. Both were very pleasant.

We watched as the moon covered the moon starting at around the 5 o’clock position then covering the sun little by little until the sun was completely covered. As the coverage approached totality colors looked odd, perhaps warmer. The sky grew increasingly darker and we saw the “diamond ring” effect as the last of the sun’s surface remained exposed. Totality lasted for three minutes making the sky eerily dark and the air temperature became much cooler.

I-74 westbound rest area near Batesville, IN

After totality, we loaded the folding chairs into the trunk and drove the short distance west to the Batesville exit where we got back on I-74 eastbound. There was a good bit of traffic but it moved. Police cars were parked in each turnaround on I-74 to prevent U turns on the interstate. There was a slight slowdown where I-74 joins 275 then where 275 connects to I-75 South. We made a quick stop at Costco in Florence, Kentucky for a few items that we can’t get at Sam’s Club then continued south to home. In all, the return trip took only about 30 minutes longer than the trip west this morning.

We had pulled pork and coleslaw left over from Saturday for dinner then watched a couple of episodes of Moonshiners on Philo before going to bed.

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