We have been planning for the 2017 Eclipse for over a year now. We got the idea of staying in Oregon from DH's sister who wanted to stay at TT Pacific City RV Resort. So, we made reservations there two months in advance, but alas she could not convince her family to make the journey. As the time drew close DH realized that we would need to drive inland as the weather called for clouds on the 21st and we are camping on the Coast at Pacific City. So on August 15th DH drove around and found us the perfect viewing spot at Baskett Slough Wildlife Refuge which is close to Salem. He liked that it had good cell service. We would be driving there very early in the am and would have many hours to kill.
On the 21st we got up at 3:30 and were on the road by 4am. Boy was DH surprised when we approached the small parking lot and already the cars were parked on the side of the road as the lot was full. So we turned around and went to the end of the line. All morning cars came and parked. The refuge is on a corner so cars parked on both ends of the gravel road. In the middle of the L was a field that had been mowed which would make a perfect place for photographers and picnicers. Here's what our view was of sunrise with the cars on the other part of the L.
There is one pit toilet at the Refuge. At 7am I wandered up and stood in the line of about 12 people. It took an hour for it to be my turn. I ate and drank very light after that. The park ranger and some volunteers setup a booth and handed out informational fliers on the eclipse and the refuge. At about 9:17 the moon's shadow started to cover the sun. And at 10:17 the full eclipse occurred. Everyone cheered. By this time there were many hundreds of cars lining the road. People were in their chairs, standing or madly photographing this celestial event. We were lucky enough to park next to a photographer. He is a retired teacher and gave us his card. We will email him our address and he will send us photos:)
DH was able to go to Mexico in 1991 for a total eclipse so this is his second one and he knew what to expect. He prepped his phone by using one of the protective lenses from a pair of eclipse glasses. We got a couple of pair free from the gas station, Mt Dew was giving them out.
Initially we were set to stay until after the event and after everyone had left. But because the full eclipse process takes over two hours, we decided to try to drive home while the moon's shadow as just finishing its transit. The drive was easy peasy. I am glad we didn't stay until the very end.
We got home around 1pm. DH went right to bed as he didn't sleep hardly at all the night before. I made myself stay up as long as possible but finally gave up at 9:30. It was just about the perfect Eclipse day for us!
We've already scouted ahead to the next full eclipse, which will be in 2024, it will cross Mexico, coming in to the US at Texas, cross the Great Lakes and then exit out in NE Canada. I think we will need to be in Texas for this!