Total Solar Eclipse — All You Need to Know

On August 21, a total solar eclipse will be visible across the U.S. along a narrow 70-mile path from Oregon to South Carolina. Even if you’re not along the path of totality, you can still see a partial solar eclipse from just about anywhere in North America, parts of South America, Africa and Europe.

SAFETY: Staring directly at a partial solar eclipse can cause serious damage to your eyes, so use glasses approved by NASA and the American Astronomical Society. Link to a good one here. You can remove the glasses ONLY during a total eclipse, so if you’re not in its path don’t even bother risking it. Seriously. Also, my photographers. GET A SOLAR FILTER if you want to take dank photos of the eclipse for clout, otherwise RIP to your camera.

Okay, now to the juicy stuff. Most likely you’re not in the path of totality so just how much of the eclipse will your city see? Refer to the photo below to check:

Cred: GreatAmericanEclipse.com

Some specific percentages I researched for major cities (shows how much of the sun will be covered by the moon as it crosses over — refer to photo above for exact times):

  • Miami, FL: 78.2%
  • Tallahassee, FL: 86.6%
  • New York, NY: 71.4%
  • Los Angeles, CA: 62.2%
  • Seattle, WA: 91.7%
  • Kansas City, KS: 100%
  • St. Louis, MO: 100%
  • Atlanta, GA: 97%
  • San Antonio, TX: 61.1%
  • Dallas, TX: 75.5%
  • Denver, CO: 92.4%

What’s so significant about this solar eclipse? For starters, the last total solar eclipse to cross country from coast to coast was wayyyyy back on June 8, 1918. For the impatient this is a huge deal because the next total solar eclipse won’t be until April 8, 2024. Just hope cloud cover doesn’t ruin your view.

How far am I from the center line of the path of totality?

Good question! Luckily there’s a chart with estimate drive times to view the total solar eclipse.

If it’s difficult to read, I’ll also do the same as above for major cities (shout out to the 20/20 eyesight):

  • Miami, FL: 10–12 hours
  • Jacksonville, FL: 4–6 hours
  • New York, NY: 10–12 hours
  • Los Angeles, CA: 16–18 hours
  • Seattle, WA: 2–4 hours
  • Dallas, TX: 8–10 hours

If you’re stuck at work during the eclipse, as most Americans will likely be since it’s a Monday, find a way to sneak outside. Just remember to bring your goofy solar eclipse glasses to work. Useful links below:

Interactive solar eclipse map

Solar eclipse glasses