A week ago, we prepared to embark on a road trip to Kentucky to visit family and experience the upcoming Eclipse in totality. We had a parking space reserved in Hopkinsville, KY at the Western Kentucky County Fairgrounds. We also reserved an SUV rental, for the capacity (5 people and some gear) and new-car-amenities. The first stop was Louiseville, to meet up with my niece and her husband. A big plus to my palatte visiting folks who are food industry professionals, we enjoyed some great food and drink.
Fantastic experience, especially with family on the eve of the Eclipse. Love the pork belly on a stick from, "Against the Grain."
Then we got up around 5am-ish, way too early for when we went to bed, for our 2.5hr trek to Hopkinsville. Everyone in the car (but the driver) dozed back asleep until an hour before when we gassed up. We stopped at City Center or Centerville (lots of 'ville's) where we saw the beginnings of traffic congestion. Surprisingly, the traffic at Hopkinsville, wasn't that bad yet. Downtown Hopkinsville was filling up, but we had elbow room at the Fairgrounds.
Below is a screenshot of the parking area, we were each allocated 15'x15' for our car and optional 'glamping' gear.
Here is a series of screenshots from video snaps. The day was pretty hot and we felt it. I think I was a walking sleepy-zombie until about an hour before totality. About 20 minutes before totality, the lighting around us was like a filter, but certainly reminded me of dusk. The temperature was dropping. And we started to hear crickets. Within the last minute of totality was when the dimming was most noticeable and the temperature was very comfortable from the 91F we had only 30 minutes prior. When totality hit, the whole area echoed in awe. Solar glasses were removed and everyone shared together the amazement of the experience.
Afterwards, we pulled out a box of "exploding bon bons" from the Wizarding World of Harry Potter (Jana and I were there the week before) that we shared with our glamping-neighbors. We poured ourselves some Louiseville craft brew as we settled ourselves before exiting. The trek back turned out to be much more congested. We travelled as fast as a zamboni resurfacing a well-shredded rink. It took us about 2.5 hrs to cover 43 miles to Greenville, where we stopped at a pizza shop that revelled in Fall decor. Michael called it a potpourri-themed-pizza-shop. They stayed open hours beyond their scheduled closing (4:30pm) to take in and welcome Eclipse'ers. They ran out of dough and had to get more from their second shop and some of their regular customers got up to help them serve. After dinner, it took about another 3 hours back to Louisville, about 134 miles.
It was an amazing experience. We knew a lot of others were going to focus on fantastic photos of the eclipse itself...here is a link to some awesome shots. http://www.boredpanda.com/solar-eclipse-2017/
It was a fantastic trip and I feel fortunate to have been able to experience it with fabulous company and the location.