Solar Eclipse At Great Smoky Mountains National Park Huge Event
The solar eclipse at Great Smoky Mountains National Park event is almost here. On Monday August 21, 2017 a total solar eclipse will take place in the continental United States. It will be visible from West Coast to East Coast, Oregon to South Carolina. The Great Smoky Mountains National Park is included in the path of the total eclipse. The far western section of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park will lie in the direct path for a 100% total eclipse. But over 60% of the GSMNPs 522,427 acres will lie within the Solar Eclipse path of totality. This is a huge event for the park as well as the rest of the states that lie within the path of totality. Here is a link to the parks interactive map that shows the exact path of the total eclipse. It can be found by visiting http://go.nps.gov/GRSM_ECLIPSE. The next total solar eclipse in the continental United States will not be until 2024.
Solar eclipse at Great Smoky Mountains timeline information. The time for the total eclipse portion of the event for the Great Smoky Mountains will be about 2:35PM and last about 2 1/2 minutes. The entire event will take about 3 hours from the start of the partial eclipse, totality then to the end of the partial eclipse. So it will start just minutes after 1:00pm and be over about 4:00pm. But the sun being totally blocked by the moon will only last about 2 1/2 minutes from 2:35;04PM until 2:36:37PM in the region of the GSMNP.
On August 21, 2017 people in the path of totality will experience darkness in the middle of the afternoon for about 2 1/2 minutes. NASA has stated that those people located ” in the path of totality will see stars and planets become visible in what is normally a sunlit sky.” The area for a total solar eclipse will happen in about a 100-mile wide corridor from Oregon across the United States toward South Carolina.
Earth’s moon will pass directly between the Earth and the sun, completely blocking out the sun’s light and making it dark as night for a short period of time that afternoon. From beginning to end in any one location the entire process will last about 3 hours. That includes both partial phases, one as it begins, totality and one as it ends.
Officials of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park are expecting huge crowds on Monday August 21, 2017 due to the event. They have already made public their plan to close the Clingmans Dome parking lot on Saturday beginning at 11:00 p.m August 19 through the evening of Monday, August 21 after the completion of the eclipse. They warn that there will be no overnight parking allowed at Clingmans Dome Parking Area. They will not allow overnight parking either at pull-offs, parking areas, and trailheads along the road during this time period. The road will be closed to all motorists, pedestrians, and bicyclists.
Here is more from the GSMNP new release “During the closure, all trails, campsites and shelters in the backcountry will remain open, but backpackers should carefully consider the road closure when planning their itineraries. All vehicles must be clear of Clingmans Dome Road by 11:00 p.m. Saturday, August 19.
Clingmans Dome Road is the only park road closed for the solar eclipse event, but park visitors should be prepared for high volume traffic across all park roads on Monday, August 21.Vehicles cannot stop in the roadway and must be parked in designated parking areas. If roads become congested or cause a safety concern, rangers may temporarily close them to additional inbound traffic until after the eclipse to reduce traffic congestion and allow access for emergency response. Visitors should expect temporary road closures throughout the day.
While the western half of the park lies within the path of totality, there are limited roads and parking areas available for travel. The risk of traffic jams and road closures is likely to increase throughout the morning of August 21. Managers suggest that visitors plan ahead to find the right eclipse experience for their situation. Many communities outside of the national park are hosting special events to observe and celebrate the celestial phenomena and those locales may be a great alternative for locals or travelers not wanting to risk
traffic congestion in the park. Visit the park website for more information at www.nps.gov/grsm/planyourvisit/2017-solar-eclipse.htm.”
For more information on the solar eclipse at the Great Smoky Mountains National Park visit this site- NPS/GSM/plan your visit/solar eclipse 2017. It has more information as well as special events about this exciting event in the Smokies.
Types of Solar Eclipse
There are four types of solar eclipses. A Total Eclipse is when the moon completely blocks out the sun. An Annular Eclipse occurs when the moon is farther from the Earth making it appear smaller, and not big enough to completely block the sun’s rays. A Partial Eclipse is when the alignment is off, the moon does not completely block the sun but just partially blocks the sun’s light.The fourth type is a Hybrid Eclipse which is a combination of the Annular Eclipse and the Total Eclipse…it begins as one and ends as the other.
No matter where you are to view this event make sure you protect your eyes. You must wear proper sunglasses to view a solar eclipse. Not all sunglass are safe to use for this type of event. Make sure the sunglasses you use to view a total eclipse are marked “Made in USA” by either Rainbow Symphony, Thousand Oaks, TSE or American Paper Optics. This will be printed on safe sunglasses to use “ISO 12312-2” or “ISO 12312-2:2015”. Sunglasses, eclipse shades or handheld viewers should meet the ISO safety standard. They also need to be in good condition, no tears, scratches, or punctures. The Great Smoky Mountains National Park visitor center stores will be selling glasses that are 100% safe to use.
Solar Eclipse Path Over TN, Great Smoky Mountains and NC
Viewing Total Solar Eclipse in TN, GSMNP and NC
As stated above only the western section of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park will be in the path of totality. South of the GSMNP in North Carolina others areas in the path of totality including the towns of Cherokee, Sylva, Murphy, Franklin, Cullowhee, Highlands, Fontana Dam, Robbinsville,and Wesser. In Tennessee just west of the Smokies totality can be seen in areas of Townsend, Alcoa, Marysville, and Tellico Plains. Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge are both right on the edge of the path of totality and will have 99% totality.
NASA 360 will also being having a live broadcast during the event. See more in their video…