NASA Just Released Its Map of the 2023 and 2024 Solar Eclipses
The map shows the path where Americans can get the best view of both eclipses.
There are plenty of reasons to travel, but perhaps none are as romantic as following the sun as it eclipses across the sky. NASA has released a map to make such a journey even more simple, with calculations to let you know where the best place will be for watching both the "ring of fire" solar eclipse on October 14, 2023 and the upcoming total solar eclipse April 8, 2024.
The map details the path of the Moon's shadow, and by mapping out its projected course it gives skygazers like us a pretty good idea of when we'll be able to see the ring of fire and the best location to see it. The map additionally projects where in North America will experience at least a partial solar eclipse.
To see the annular eclipse this October, people viewing in its path from Oregon to Texas should have the best view, given that the sky is unobstructed. The total eclipse follows a projected path from Texas to Maine. See it below or head here to get even more detailed information.
The United States won't be the only place to get a spectacular view of the natural phenomenon, and the map also accounts for this.
"Neither eclipse will be contained to the contiguous US, though. In the lower right corner of the NASA map, a globe shows the full paths for both eclipses," a NASA statement about the map explained. "The annular eclipse (in yellow and black) extends into Mexico, Central America, and South America. The total eclipse (in purple and black) also crosses Mexico and northeastern Canada."
The map was brought to life by Michala Garrison, who is a member of the Scientific Visualization Studio. The data used to create the map comes from several different NASA missions. You can learn more about the creation of the map on the NASA website.
It looks like I'll be planning a trip to Roswell, New Mexico in October 2023, for the ultimate extraterrestrial experience.
Ready to go stargazing?
Here are all the best stargazing events that you can get out and see this month or you could stay in a stream the northern lights from home. If you're just getting started, check out our guide to astronomy for beginners or easy stargazing road trips from big US cities.