Eclipse Camp - Fiberglass RV


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Old 08-22-2017, 07:20 AM   #1
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Eclipse Camp

We studied the "Path of Totality" maps and focused on large tracts of BLM public land west of Casper, Wyoming to escape the crowds. We looked at gravel roads off Highway 26 that went to the center line of the path. We settled on a boondocking site on a ridge with a panoramic view of the sky and open grazing lands. There was intermingled public and private ranch lands in the area, so we used a GPS to make sure we camped on public land. By the day of the eclipse, there were a few other folks in the area, but none closer than a quarter mile.

The eclipse was the most amazing natural spectacle we have ever witnessed. The subdued lighting on the landscape and the sunset colors along a 360 degree horizon were an unexpected bonus to the event. We saw a group of antelope running around confused, and heard cows mooing in distress. The temperature dropped so dramatically that we put on light jackets. We had eclipse glasses to watch the progress of the moon across the sun. Totality lasted about 2:26 minutes. Everything went quiet, even the wind calmed to zero. Planets and stars appeared. Too soon, a sliver of light escaped from the side of the sun and the process reversed. We were mesmerized and didn't want to leave that place.

The best part was that we could do this sitting in front of our trailer with the the most unique view ever. We can see ourselves becoming eclipse chasers and already checking out areas for 2024. But we may never find a spot like we had yesterday.
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Old 08-22-2017, 08:27 AM   #2
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That sounds AMAZING! So nice that you were able to watch it like that!
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Old 08-22-2017, 08:49 AM   #3
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I was watching a television interview yesterday from Madras, Oregon. A woman from BC was being interviewed. She said for months, she was poo-pooing the whole thing and thought it was going to be a whole lot of much to do about nothing. But the family wanted to go, so she road in a car for 15 hours to get there... complaining the entire way.

NOW, she's a believer. She described it as "It was magical, surreal, exciting, humbling, awe-inspiring. What a wonderful world (& beyond)!" She and the family have been to Argentina in the past. SHE is starting the planning to go again in July 2019 just to SEE the Eclipse.

Sounds like it is life-changing and addictive, doesn't it?
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Old 08-22-2017, 08:57 AM   #4
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I agree, it was pretty cool. I was not too far outside Idaho Falls, far enough south of Leadore Idaho to be in the path of totality. It got pretty busy for a BLM dispersed camping area, but not terrible.

We had maybe just under 2 minutes of totality. Yeah, it got really cold! Saw a couple stars and it felt just like dusk/dawn. Only a 2.5 hour drive for me so well worth it.
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Old 08-22-2017, 10:25 AM   #5
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I just got great news this morning in my quest to corner the market on eclipses glasses. I got an email that tells me i have a distant relative that died and has ten million pairs that I inherited and all I have to do is send one Thousand dollars to this Nigerian Prince for shipping and handling.

If any of you want in on this investment opportunity please let me know.
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Old 08-22-2017, 10:45 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by Darwin Maring View Post
I just got great news this morning in my quest to corner the market on eclipses glasses. I got an email that tells me i have a distant relative that died and has ten million pairs that I inherited and all I have to do is send one Thousand dollars to this Nigerian Prince for shipping and handling.

If any of you want in on this investment opportunity please let me know.
We can laugh, thinking about the gazillion of paper and plastic Eclipse glasses that will be disposed of, but if you're serious about helping others... do this:

So now what do you do with all the eclipse glasses? You can send them to Astronomers Without Borders at this address:
Explore Scientific
621 Madison Street
Springdale, Arkansas 72762


They will donate to children who have no access to glasses when their countries experience eclipses.


Save the eyes of others for the cost of a couple of first class stamps.
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Old 08-22-2017, 10:47 AM   #7
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Didn't camp but.............Drove from Indy to Joy, KY........41 hours away from home. 12 hours in truck. 1 night in hotel. 589 miles traveled. Horrendous traffic coming back. All for a 2 min 29 sec. total solar eclipse. I would do it all again tomorrow. Totally awesome!!!
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Old 08-22-2017, 11:29 AM   #8
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We watched it from our patio. My daughter, son-in-law and 2 grandkids came over for the event. We had more eclipse glasses than needed. I find Astronomy events interesting but NOT magical as some have described this event.

I was very glad it didn't require us driving to see it. We let my kids drive to our place, they showed up Sunday around 11 am and left Monday around 3 pm. Long visit but good.
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Old 08-23-2017, 04:17 PM   #9
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We were fortunate. We watched from our back yard!
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Old 08-23-2017, 04:42 PM   #10
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We were fortunate. We watched from our back yard!
I will have to wait until April 8th, 2024 and hope for clear weather and I can watch it from my backyard in Indy. Nice Pic!
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Old 08-23-2017, 07:05 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by Spanke View Post
Didn't camp but.............Drove from Indy to Joy, KY........41 hours away from home. 12 hours in truck. 1 night in hotel. 589 miles traveled. Horrendous traffic coming back. All for a 2 min 29 sec. total solar eclipse. I would do it all again tomorrow. Totally awesome!!!
Your picture looks identical to one we actually took in a special way, except rotated slightly. Did you get that picture from Facebook or take it yourself?

Here's our picture:
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Old 08-23-2017, 07:12 PM   #12
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We were camped north of Sun Valley Idaho, way out in the National Forest. The experience was amazing. Heres my report as we are heading back:

We're on our way back from the forest north of Sun Valley/Ketchum, Idaho, and the eclipse. Sitting in the forest up there, pitch black except for the Milky Way and uncountable stars, a mile or more from anyone at nearly 7,000', I was reminded of how the animals live in the forest. Late at night I was sitting outside and listening to distant calls from unknown animals. Sometimes faint and sometimes closer. Echoing in the night. Was it a bird? A lion? Don't know. What was that rustling sound over there? A blush of cold air moves by. The pines hiss in the slight breeze. Very dark and unforgiving up there. Way out of my element. Sitting outside, taking it all in, with a bit of unease and catching a glimpse of how insignificant I am.

Our dog Gogo is very alert in the night. She perks up and growls. Then listens and does it again. Minutes before, she was content and covered in a blanket, not a care. Now she's on duty and aware of something I can't perceive.

As I come into the trailer for the night and bring Gogo in, I wonder, should I lock the door?

The morning brings the eclipse. Camera and welding helmets ready. Watch the clock. What percentage is it now? Make some notes. Etc.

About 20 minutes before total, the light is dimmer, but not softer. More gray instead of yellow. Less light, but not like evening with a yellowing of the color. Then it begins to get a bit cooler.

Then the change accelerates. Every minute brings reduced light and cooler temps again. The insects disappear. A look through the welding helmet reveals about 7/8 coverage.

Then only a sliver remains and it's time to get ready for the main event.

Then the pace quickens even more and it gets dark! Not totally dark, and we were close to the center of totality, but about like a full moon night. Middle of the day and it's as dark as a full moon night. And it all comes on so fast at near total. A sunset proceeds at a linear pace. Not this.

I look west. Miles and miles away I can see an orange glow. As I look west, it's the same affect as last light after sunset, but before total darkness. Dark where I am and a faint glow from the west, miles away.

The sun now is just a ring. Prominences flame outward and appear beyond the moon's diameter. A black disk with an uneven ring of white. I fumble with my camera. I look around and burn in a memory of this night, err, this event.

Then the diamond ring appears. As it does, the special darkness is about to end. My "extra" night is a short lived one. Then, there is more light, again, it's not a yellow light from a sunset or a sunrise, it's a dim light. A dim gray that quickly begins to brighten. Some giant in the sky has his hand on a dimmer and he's slowly rotating it to "bring up the light" in this particular theater.

Soon, it's brighter still and the advancing sun reaches about 1/4 uncovered. By then the light looks nearly normal and the temperature begins to warm up. Soon after, the insects resume their work and the power of the sun becomes more apparent.

The power of the sun is way beyond my comprehension. I've worked with it for years as a heat source and still marvel at it's power. My arm rests in the sun as I drive and feels too warm. I grab my hat before heading out to protect myself. And sitting in my chair I feel the temperature drop as the moon shades the earth. At 93,000,000 miles away, the sliver of light that lands on me is an incredibly small percentage of the energy projecting in all directions from that source, but it's enough to burn me and warm me and allow me to see, even at that distance!

So, we got some nice pictures and had a fun trip to see this phenomenon. We truly experienced it. It's the second one I've been in. The first was way out at sea, somewhere in the Pacific in 1970 or '71. Not quite total, but memorable.

We went about 300 of the 600 miles back today. Went through a rain storm south of Wells Nevada on the way to Ely. Lightening bolts striking the ground and curtains of rain. Tonight the air is fresh and we're in Ely for the night. Very quiet. Just got back from a walk marveling at the expansive desert. After dinner and a cookie, Gogo burrowed under her blanket and disappeared.

I began to hear sprinkling rain and went outside to check it out. Yes, the rain caught up with us and is making things even more interesting. I love summer rain and we get a lot of it in Nevada. Bring it on! As I stood there in the darkness, after rolling up the windows, a brilliant white flash! Love it! Then seconds later the rumbling thunder talked about it. Guess I'll spend some more time out tonight, enjoying the power of the high desert in summer. It never gets old.

Oh yeah, you can see some pix of the sun and the camp on Facebook. My page is John Roemer.
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Old 08-23-2017, 08:07 PM   #13
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John,

You put up some nice posts about the experiences these silly trailers are intended to facilitate. There was another one you posted in the "What trailer to buy?" thread (post 85) which I also enjoyed. These kinds of posts from you and other members help me to remember that a travel trailer is supposed to be the means and not an end in itself.

I had an opportunity to go to Oregon for the eclipse and for some reason one of my first thoughts was the image of stepping over people passed out and puking on themselves at rock concerts in the early 70's. Something about the words "international event!" just feeds my natural instincts to go a different direction and seek seclusion.

After seeing a 90+% eclipse from our driveway, and reading your post here, I'd say I'll take the time and make an effort to find my quiet place next time. So, thanks!
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Old 08-23-2017, 11:04 PM   #14
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Mike,

Thanks for the kind comments.

We were skeptical too. Liye didn't really want to go when I asked her about it six months ago, so I never made reservations.

Then we decided to go, but camping reservations were not gonna happen. And I tell you I'm really glad they were not available! I think it must have been crazy in some areas.

I decided to wing it, and then, out of the blue, Lee and Norma saw a post and volunteered their driveway for the first night in Twin Falls. Then we went up north of Sun Valley and began looking around for National Forest access roads. I flagged down a local woman on a bike and she directed us to an access road that went for miles out into the forest.

There was maybe a half dozen campers in five miles. We found a quiet spot and settled in at about 7,000'. A mile from anyone.

We did a lot of scrambling around, note taking, picture taking, welding helmet use, some giggling and a lot of "wow"! New reclining chairs came in handy.

Overall a great experience! And one just done by the seat of our pants at the most unlikely time to be doing it. Perfect.

I don't mind taking our Ollie up difficult roads and we went about as far in as I'd want to. Narrow, rocky and steep, with lots of close branches. So we just idled along in 4WD. I had no idea if we would even find a place to turn around. When we did, it was an excellent spot to camp.

I brought our 2000 watt genny, but when it came time to charge, I used jumper cables from the truck and it seemed faster and easier. When I get the inverter installed, I doubt we'll take the genny.

Tonight we're in Ely Nevada on a leisurely route home. Decided to stay a second night and ride the local train from the train museum out to the old smelter, tomorrow. Today we went to the old Charcoal Kilns and Cave Lake. Had dinner in a jail cell at the Jailhouse Casino. Been seeing rainbows, lightening and sprinkles of rain all day. Overall, incredibly beautiful and well worth it!!

Tonight there is a Scamp and a Cassita camped here too. We met the Scamp guy and will connect with the Cassita folks tomorrow morning. Then it's on to the next adventure on the last leg of the trip. Strictly playing it by ear. I didn't even bring a map!
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