Remembering The 2017 Total Solar Eclipse In The North Georgia Mountains

Posted by Toby Bloomberg on Tue, Apr 25, 2017

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“The Across America Eclipse” was one of the most spectacular natural happenings that occurred in the north Georgia Mountains during the summer of 2017. A Total Solar Eclipse is a rare occurrence and we were fortunate this one came so close to Helen, Georgia.

The 2017 American eclipse made its journey from the west coast of the United States through the heartland states to the Atlantic Ocean (and beyond).

The total duration of the eclipse lasted only 90 minutes, but all who had the pleasure of seeing it agreed it was one of the most memorable events of their lifetimes. The last solar eclipse in the United States was February 26, 1979.

The best places to watch a solar eclipse are in what are called the path of the center line. The center line of the August 21, 2017 total solar eclipse passed through ten states including Georgia. According to Astronomy Magazine, “The very northeastern tip of Georgia encounters the center line from just past 2:35 p.m. EDT until not quite 2:39 p.m.”

Helen, Georgia was in the enviable position where people were able to to watch this once in a lifetime event surrounded by the beauty of the North Georgia Mountains. 

Total solar eclipse _ 1.jpg

What makes a solar eclipse so special? During a solar eclipse, the Earth, Moon, and Sun are perfectly aligned. The illusion is that, when lined up, the Moon and Sun appear to be nearly the same size from Earth. This configuration casts a shadow on those in the path as the moon travels across the sky.

Courtesy of NASA

Image Courtesy of NASA 

For many people it is nature’s incredible light show that is the main attraction of the total solar eclipse.

“This serendipitous fact allows the Sun to be completely covered during eclipse yet also allows us to see the Sun's atmosphere, its corona. The corona is hidden from us all our lives except for the very special moments during the total solar eclipse.

Another realization that may hit you during totality is that you are watching the solar system in motion. In real-time, you can perceive the relative motions of the Moon around Earth and the Earth around the Sun. “- Great American Eclipse

As you might imagine there were many celebrations – some private and others public - in the Bavarian town of Helen, Georgia, as well as, to the surrounding area. The local  events included:

Tallulah Gorge State Park

Atlanta Outdoor Club – Brasstown Bald 

Rabun County

Eclipse 2017 website

BeechWood Inn, Georgia's Premier Wine Country Inn

Image Courtesy of NASA

Image Courtesy of NASA

Facts About The 2017 Total Eclipse

Date: August 21, 2017

Duration: Total time of the path was only 90 minutes. The greatest duration was near Carbondale, IL lasting for about 2 minutes 41.6 seconds.

United States Path of Totality: 14 states including Oregon, Idaho, Montana (barely), Wyoming, Nebraska, Iowa (barely), Kansas, Missouri, Illinois, Kentucky, Tennessee, North Carolina, Georgia, and South Carolina. Interactive Map 

Total length and width: 8,600 miles long with an approximately width of 70 miles.

Speed of the Total Eclipse: The speed of the moon’s shadow moved at approximately more than one thousand miles an hour. U.S. Naval Observatory Astronomic Applications Department provided an interactive form that showed the sun time for cities along the Total Eclipse path. 

Next Total Eclipse in the United States: April 8, 2024. 

Image Courtesy of NASA

Image Courtesy of NASA

8 Tips How To Safely Watch Eclipses

1. Do not ever look directly into the sun – even for a few seconds – you risk eye damage.
2. Talk to your kids about safety and monitor your children closely during the eclipse
3. Wear “eclipse glasses” from a reputable source
4 .Put on your eclipse glasses before the eclipse begins
5. Remove your eclipse glasses Only After the totality of the eclipse
6. Do not remove your eclipse glasses looking into the sun
7. If you are using binoculars you must have special solar filters
8. Important! Read this article from NASA which provides more information. It also describes where and when it might be possible to view the Total Eclipse with the naked eye.

Image Courtesy of NASAImage Courtesy of NASA

9 Non Technical Tips On How To Photograph An Eclipse

1. Staying safe is your number one priority. Wear eye protection such as eclipse glasses.
2. Practice. Since the eclipse moves so quickly and it is in your range for a short period of time, you won’t be able to make adjustments to your equipment.
3. Practice. Take pictures of the moon.
4. Make sure your batteries are new and all your equipment is 100% charged
5. Ensure your tripod is stable
6. Use solar filters
7. Do not use a flash. A flash will spoil the dark adaption and ruin the experience for the people near you.
8. Read more tips and information about taking photos at a Total Eclipse from the National Geographic
9. Read how to use a smart phone to take photos of the Total Eclipse fromAstronomy Technology Today

We were so excited Cedar Creek Cabin Rentals properties were located in Helen Georgia making them one of the best places to experience daylight turning into darkness, accompanied by the amazing Mother Nature light show. Watching the total solar eclipse was a unique opportunity to share the wonders of nature with friends and family.

For people who had not visited the North Georgia Mountains before the total solar eclipse it was a wonderful time to get to know the the region that we love. For those who were familiar with Helen and the surrounding parks and trails, it was a time to get reacquainted with the area. We were happy so many of our Cedar Creek Cabin Rentals guests had the opportunity to create memories that will, for certain, last a life time!

Image Courtesy of NASA

Courtesy of NASA 

 

Resources

Astrology Magazine - 25 facts you should know about the August 21, 2017, total solar eclipse 

Astrology Magazine - Two dozen tips for the August 21, 2017, total solar eclipse 

NASA 

Video Map of Eclipse Path 

Great American Eclipse 

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Topics: Helen Georgia, Cabin Rentals
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