Eclipse Day

We rolled the girls out of bed and into the car,

leaving Keystone on the dot of 7 a.m., 

enroute Nebraska and the eclipse.

Wary of the predicted traffic apocalypse, we avoided highways and traveled mostly on back roads, 

passing increasing numbers of people who had pulled off the road and set up eclipse  camp. 

We finally pulled over just north of Scott's Bluff, Nebraska, in the path of total solar eclipse.

The moon was just starting its pass 

and a tiny sliver of the sun was eclipsed. 

We set up our own camp ** and waited,

some more patiently than others,

for the full eclipse.

 Full sun

I knew my camera phone wasn't capable

of taking shots of the sun,

so I concentrated on pics 

 Full eclipse

showing the increasing darkness.

The light not only got darker

but more eerie,

the temperature dropped,

and daytime sounds - like bird songs - dropped off

while nighttime sounds - like crickets - got louder.

It never got quite dark enough to see stars, but Mars was brightly visible.

Then 1 minute and 17.7 seconds later (according to NASA), the process reversed itself,

getting eerily light again.

Such an incredible experience. 

We headed for Colorado shortly after this. We ran into only a few pockets of heavy traffic, thanks in large part to Rachel's navigational planning. Others weren't so lucky - Interstate 25 between Cheyenne and Loveland was still backed up at 1:30 a.m., more than 14 hours after the eclipse. So glad we weren't stuck in that mess.

** Trivia time - who knew Nebraska had cactus?? Sneaky little barbed devils took a liking to me. I had several stuck to my legs (ouch!), pants and shoes. Fortunately it was only me they liked; the little girls would not have been pleased if they'd been the victims.