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April 8, 2024 is going to be a pretty big deal in Ohio.
We’ll have tons of visitors to the Buckeye state, each of them with their eyes pointed towards the sky. Most likely, you remember the massive hype regarding the total solar eclipse back in 2017. If you weren’t able to fully experience that one, don’t feel too bad. The upcoming 2024 eclipse will offer Ohioans an even better viewing because Ohio is directly in the path of complete totality.
Totality, that moment when the sun is fully eclipsed by the moon, will start in Mexico before taking a path northeast towards Maine. At 3:08 p.m. EST on April 8, totality will enter Ohio in the southeast and travel northeast across the state for 11 minutes.
Pick The Best Viewing Location
If you’re hoping to watch from Columbus, you’ll want to go as far northwest as you can get, since the downtown area is not in totality. You’ll likely have to go to the Dublin area to experience totality. In Dublin, totality will hit around 3:11 p.m. and last for around 1 and a half minutes. Westerville is also expected to experience totality, although it will only last for roughly 30 seconds.
Around the state, several cities will experience totality for over 3 minutes, including Dayton, Lima, Springfield, Sandusky, and Cleveland. You can learn more about the direct path of the eclipse from NASA.
Order Your Viewing Equimpent Early
During the lead up to the 2017 eclipse, one common problem facing excited potential viewers was the lack of eclipse equipment. Safe glasses were hard to come by as the eclipse drew closer, so this time around, it’s best to be prepared.
When buying glasses to wear, it’s important to make sure that they’re made correctly and will actually do the business of keeping your eyes protected during this solar event. For info about where to order your glasses, the American Astronomical Society has a list of reputable vendors here.
Once totality hits, it’s safe to take off your glasses and look at the magical solar corona with the naked eye. But for the periods of the eclipse leading up to and away from that moment, you’ll need to keep your eyes safe.
Tips For Photographing The Eclipse
Whether you’re using your phone or you’ve got a high-end camera, you can get some awesome photos of the solar eclipse. For those hoping to document the event on their DSLR cameras, you can find handy guides from Nikon and B&H Photo on how to snap the perfect solar eclipse pic.
When it comes to taking photos on your phone, there are a few simple things to remember that will help you get better images of the eclipse. First of all, don’t zoom in. I know it will be tempting, but just trust me. You can always crop it later if you need to and this way, you’ll have to deal with less grain.
Secondly, remember to cover your camera phone lens with your eclipse glasses. This will keep your photo from being too overexposed by the bit of the sun that isn’t blocked by the moon. Finally, consider adding some cool gear to your mobile camera set up, including additional lenses or shooting through a telescope.
Where To Stay in Ohio
There will be many people looking for places to stay when they come to Ohio to view the eclipse. One popular option around the country during the 2017 eclipse was camping. It’s affordable, it’s focused on the great outdoors, and if you plan it right, you won’t even have to leave your campsite to enjoy the eclipse.
There are dozens of campgrounds along the path of totality during the eclipse, including state parks around Hamilton, Dayton, and most of northwest Ohio. Cuyahoga Valley National Park will likely be a prime destination for eclipse viewers, but unfortunately, guests are not permitted to camp within the park. Luckily, several state parks in the area do offer camping.
Although most campgrounds don’t allow reservations so far in advance, it’s important to remember that as we get closer to 2024, the spots will fill up quickly.
Are you ready to have a front-row seat to this gorgeous phenomenon? Because it’s never too early to start planning for something awesome.
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