On Aug. 21, my husband and I, along with several Idaho friends, witnessed one of the most incredible astronomical events we have ever seen.
We planned the event for months. We studied all things eclipse, researched and reserved the perfect backcountry location within the zone of 100 percent totality in Idaho, knowing that even with ideal weather conditions, Wisconsin would see only about 85 percent totality that day. After all, this was the Great American Eclipse!
We are all highly educated, we believe in sound science and we even launched the phone app that revealed when each phase of the eclipse would occur. This app was created by a student at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, and it was accurate to the millisecond. As the eclipse started, the surroundings grew darker and the temperatures dropped as we were awestruck by the sheer beauty of this amazing and rare event.
What luck we did have to be in an area with clear skies, no crowds and a decent camera to capture various photos of the event, including the diamond ring phase. It was breathtaking. We toasted with champagne! As the Idaho Statesman succinctly headlined its Aug. 22, 2017, keepsake edition newspaper, it was definitely “Something we’ll remember for the rest of our lives.”
Our friends and colleagues here in Wisconsin now view our photos with a bit of jealousy that we did it right. We believed the science, we created the plan and we successfully executed a totality viewing that left an indelible mark in our memories. This eclipse was not a Hollywood stunt, folks, this was unequivocally the real deal.
Julie Anderson lives in Oak Creek, Wis.