Eclipse Captures Outer Banks Imagination

Solar eclipse. The moon passing over the sun. Image colors from multiple camera filters.
Solar eclipse. The moon passing over the sun. Image colors from multiple camera filters.

We didn’t have a total eclipse of the sun on the Outer Banks. Somewhere around 80%, so it wasn’t immediately noticeable on the ground.

What the Eclipse Looked Like

The light though that does filter through at that point has an odd quality to it. A little bit dull, a little bit yellow, it’s still sunlight, but different.

The real show was in the sky and hopefully no one actually tried to look at the sun. Local businesses sold out of eclipse glasses by Saturday at the latest, but even without those specially designed glasses there were ways to view the eclipse.

A lot of people just went back to an old low tech method…a pinhole in a box and watch the shadow of the moon swallow the sun.

Some of us tried to get some pictures. It really took some specialized equipment to get something that that truly represented what was happening in the sky. The image with on this page was taken with a camera with every lens in the house—UV, ultraviolet and polarized. The sun still completely overwhelmed the camera, which is probably a good cautionary note about looking directly into the sun.

Jockey’s Ridge probably gets the award for the most popular viewing site. No trees and no buildings and the highest point around certainly has come advantages.

We haven’t heard much from farther south yet. Since the path of 100% coverage passed directly over Charleston, SC, the farther south on the Outer Banks the more profound the effects. There’s a very good possibility that Ocracoke is far enough south that a ten minute dusk fell over the Island about 2:50 p.m.

The weather was wonderful for the eclipse. Warm and sunny, but there was a nice breeze blowing all day. Even standing not Jockey’s Ridge, with no shade, was tolerable.

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