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Eclipse Chasing

One year ago, when my husband first mentioned we needed to watch the upcoming eclipse in the path of totality, I just nodded. I had no idea what that meant. I had seen a couple of eclipses before, so I was prepared for a neat experience and hadn’t given it much thought beyond that.

Because of my lack of mental preparation, the intense sight of the sun blotted out from the sky blew me away. If I hadn’t known the astronomical explanation, I would have thought Jesus was on his way. The stars came out, confused nighttime crickets started chirping and the twilight sky blossomed out in sunset colors despite the time of day. I stared dazedly at the dark circle hanging in the sky with spectral light flaring around it. Those two minutes in Scottsville, Kentucky, will remain with me forever.

I can now see why some people chase eclipses all over the globe. I’m already planning for the next American total eclipse in 2024.

And I’m not alone. Many people who either want another look or missed the event completely stand ready for next chance to witness the sun disappear from the sky.

Group tour planners can give their travelers a chance to chase an eclipse before the seven-year wait to 2024 with the help of a solar eclipse tour operator.

Some upcoming eclipse tours include:

1. The 2019 Solar Eclipse Tour to Chile by Tropical Sails Corp., based in Phoenix, with visits to the Alto Atacama Luxury Lodge, Santiago and La Serena

2. A 2020 eclipse tour to Argentina by Eclipse Tours, based in Houston

3. Tours to both Chile in 2019 and Argentine in 2020 by A Classic Tour, based in Redondo Beach, California

Each of these tours give groups a chance to explore the region’s attractions while fitting in a quick natural phenomenon.

Though I’d love to jump on any of these tours, I’ll at least stay ready for 2024. I now know the difference between 95% eclipse visibility and the path of totality is the difference between a neat experience and a once-in-a-lifetime celestial marvel.