In case you’ve been living under a rock, on Monday, August 21, the United States will experience a total solar eclipse. The astronomical event will make history. The last total solar eclipse in the continental U.S. occurred in 1979. But, it crossed just five states. For the last coast-to-coast total eclipse, you have to go back to 1918. That’s why the 2017 is nicknamed the Great American Eclipse.
In fact, since this eclipse will start on the West Coast and cross all the way to the East Coast, several yachting destinations and shipyards are in its path. In fact, depending on where you’ll be, you’ll be in complete darkness, with just the corona of the sun (above) visible.
Here’s where to catch the coolest views, from six superyacht regions.
- Oregon and Washington. Pacific Northwest marinas and shipyards will be the first to witness this historic event. Better yet, Oregon and Washington are within the 90 to 100 percent exposure band for the Great American Eclipse. According to NASA, the lunar shadow will enter the United States near Lincoln City, Oregon at 9:05 a.m. PDT. Totality starts a little over an hour later. Yacht builders like Christensen Shipyards and Delta Marine are farther north but still ideally positioned, as is the entire Oregon and Washington coastline.
- Southern California. The National Weather Service is warning that the marine layer may make viewing difficult in San Diego. It’s still worth heading out to spots like Fifth Avenue Landing, Kona Kai Marina, Cabrillo Isle Marina, and more. Eclipse amount: nearly 70 percent.
- The Great Lakes. Depending on where you are in the Great Lakes, you’ll see anywhere from 70 to nearly 90 percent of the Great American Eclipse. Chicago, for example, will be at the higher end of the scale. Farther north, in the town of Manitowoc, Wisconsin, the folks at Burger Boat Company will see close to 80 percent.
- Fort Lauderdale. The superyacht cruising capital of the world will experience close to 80 percent of the total solar eclipse, too. With so many marinas, refit yards, and general coastline as part of the city, the viewing options are infinite.
- Maine. Unfortunately, the farther north you are, the less of the eclipse you’ll see. But, 50 to 60 percent of a total solar eclipse is still an eclipse. The perennially popular Bar Harbor, plus yacht yards like Hodgdon Yachts and Front Street Shipyard are ideal viewing spots.
- Georgia and South Carolina. Just as the Great American Eclipse begins in Oregon, it ends directly over Charleston, South Carolina around 2:48 p.m. EDT. Just down the coast, Savannah, home to Thunderbolt Marine, will experience nearly 95 percent of the eclipse.
To determine your chances of seeing most of the Great American Eclipse, download this map from NASA.