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Nationwide Weather Forecasts for Eclipse Day

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#151 Rooftop-Astro

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Posted 21 August 2017 - 05:03 PM

Success in Nashville. It started really clouding up about 20 minutes before totality, but opened up about 5 minutes before and stayed open for about five minutes after. I think if I'd have stayed at the hotel (about 3 miles east), I'd have missed it.



#152 BGazing

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Posted 21 August 2017 - 06:00 PM

looked awesome on nasa stream. i hope you all enjoyed the show, wish i could have made it over.



#153 FloridaFocus

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Posted 21 August 2017 - 06:02 PM

Success in Nashville. It started really clouding up about 20 minutes before totality, but opened up about 5 minutes before and stayed open for about five minutes after. I think if I'd have stayed at the hotel (about 3 miles east), I'd have missed it.

Sucess in Cedars of Lebanon State Park just southeast of Nashville! Missed first contact due to clouds but perfectly clear thereafter, and for the main event!

 

Stopped at a gas station just outside the park on the way back and every conversation I overheard from people who'd been outside the park was that it was clouded over the while time. Location, location, location! 

 

I gave 5 extra eclipse glasses I brought with me to a family that had shown up with none - not sure what they'd been thinking. Maybe I'd built up some positive karma from that. Either way, I'll take it!! 


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#154 Bowmoreman

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Posted 21 August 2017 - 07:24 PM

Spring City TN was perfect... not a single cloud all day... from long before C1 to long after C3; just perfect.

I had extra solar film; gave it to a guy and his friends that drove down from Ohio with their 6" Orion Dob... his scope then perfectly complemented my Lunt Double stack; we kept about 80 people riveted from C1 all the way through...

Dozens of kiddos got their viewing in, and several "got the bug" (I predict). Nice to see a lot of younger folks getting interested in our passion! Just watching their faces as they closed in to the Lunt (I had my Denk Binoviewers on it!) was priceless... you could TELL the moment they SAW it!

I am so thankful.


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#155 LooseFur

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Posted 21 August 2017 - 10:39 PM

We had an awesome time south of Fulton, Missouri.  It was nice in town but we decided at 12:45 it was threatening to get cloudy in Fulton and we headed for blue skies ten miles to the south.  It was brilliant and beautiful, and an amazing experience.


Edited by LooseFur, 21 August 2017 - 10:40 PM.

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#156 bierbelly

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Posted 21 August 2017 - 10:45 PM

The eclipse was a total wash out here in st Joe Missouri.


Sux.

#157 goodricke1

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Posted 22 August 2017 - 06:13 AM

Today's APOD says that many locations saw predominantly clouds, so congrats to you lucky ones who succeeded; there seems to have been lots of local variation alright. Thanks to NASA for their multiple broadcast locations, the atmosphere in Kentucky in particular came across most entertainingly. And no I didn't even catch the 4% partial from over here, although some imagers wre successful from Ireland and the UK.


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#158 APshooter

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Posted 26 August 2017 - 11:31 PM

Clear In St Louis.  We had almost perfect skies (thin high clouds) from C1 to about halfway to C2.  Totality was spectacular and perfect in a blue sky!  C3-C4 had a heavy buildup of clouds that came and went, blocking some images.  Bracket hit the tripod leg with 9 minutes to go, so no C4 shots...


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#159 AUricle

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Posted 27 August 2017 - 08:12 AM

On our 8/20 arrival at the viewing site, near Columbia MO, the weather was perfect. I'd agonized over a forecast that seemed to be going in the wrong direction.

That night was beautiful, and we had a great time under the dark starry sky.

I was up and out just before sunrise. It was a variable scene, looking very iffy to the N and NW, but it didn't seem to be moving towards us. Dew was extremely heavy in the humid morning. Just a few cirrus wisps on deep blue background overhead.

By 11am it was getting hot and muggy, and as we waited, I could see the cirrus haze start to build.

It wasn't a problem for the first half of the the C1-C2 period visually, but I began to worry about my camera exposures.

Then it degraded steadily and all sorts of weirdness happened. I swore rain was imminent..... Until C3.....when it all magically reversed itself, so that 20 min after C3, it was sunny, hot, humid, and windless.

Living near Chicago, I've seen abrupt weather changes all my life.....but always as a result of a weather front, or some lake affect from Lake Michigan.

But I'd bet my left arm this weather was a direct result of the coming and going of the shadow, especially in the humid conditions we were experiencing. Damnedest thing I've ever seen.

The weather gods can be as cruel as the baseball gods. Must be related.....lol.gif  


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#160 BarrySimon615

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Posted 27 August 2017 - 09:48 AM

Today's APOD says that many locations saw predominantly clouds, so congrats to you lucky ones who succeeded; there seems to have been lots of local variation alright. Thanks to NASA for their multiple broadcast locations, the atmosphere in Kentucky in particular came across most entertainingly. And no I didn't even catch the 4% partial from over here, although some imagers wre successful from Ireland and the UK.



There are clouds and then there are clouds. One of the weather services had information on the cloud cover by altitude with (I assume) high clouds being cirrus clouds. For where my group was, in the Jefferson City/Chamois, MO area, the forecast the day before was basically high clouds with little/no low and medium clouds. By the morning of the eclipse that had improved a bit more. That is exactly what we got and our less than perfect skies were not pristine blue, we did have high cirrus clouds, thin to almost non-existent in some places and noticeable in other places. However this did not take away from the majesty of totality and in some ways may have even enhanced it.

Bottom Line - you have to drill down and find out what type of clouds and the thickness of the cloud cover, especially if cirrus, does matter.

I am posting an image showing the degree of cirrus clouds we had, especially near totality, and in my opinion, at least visually, this had little to no impact on the enjoyment of the eclipse. (Note - what we had during totality was more like what you see on the right side of the image, not the left.)

Barry Simon

Attached Files


Edited by BarrySimon615, 27 August 2017 - 09:51 AM.

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#161 bunyon

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Posted 27 August 2017 - 10:01 AM

We had similar and, fortunately, an experienced eclipse chaser with us who convinced us that the high thin clouds were no big deal.  There is a LOT of weather data out there and the weather is far too chaotic to expect accuracy to the mile and minute.  I found the forecasts really good 36 hours out.  Where they missed, they missed by a few miles or half an hour.  Which, given the nature of the eclipse, is enormous.  Local forecasts (it'll be cloudy in Nebraska!) are useless.  Maybe worse as they prompt action that is unnecessary. 


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#162 REC

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Posted 27 August 2017 - 10:04 AM

Spring City TN was perfect... not a single cloud all day... from long before C1 to long after C3; just perfect.

I had extra solar film; gave it to a guy and his friends that drove down from Ohio with their 6" Orion Dob... his scope then perfectly complemented my Lunt Double stack; we kept about 80 people riveted from C1 all the way through...

Dozens of kiddos got their viewing in, and several "got the bug" (I predict). Nice to see a lot of younger folks getting interested in our passion! Just watching their faces as they closed in to the Lunt (I had my Denk Binoviewers on it!) was priceless... you could TELL the moment they SAW it!

I am so thankful.

The Denk's on the scope must have been awesome!



#163 davetroy

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Posted 27 August 2017 - 10:32 AM

ClearOutside.com seemed to have the most-accurate and consistent forecasts from about five days out. Saturday night, when the forecast was not looking good for southeast Missouri and southwest Illinois, ClearOutside was pointing out that most of the cloud cover would be high clouds. Then, when I woke up in the morning, it was all looking good.

 

We were headed to Chester, Illinois from Belleville, Illinois, and about halfway down, passed through a town called Red Bud, Illinois that had small signs for "Party in the Dark in Lincoln Park." My brother said, "Why don't we stop here?" but I thought it was too far north. But after driving a few more miles, I decided to check, and sure enough, Red Bud had 2:21 of totality, just 19 seconds less than Chester. Then, a check of the Clear Outside app showed that Red Bud had the best cloud forecast among the four sights we were considering, Perryville, Missouri, Chester and Carbondale being the others. I'm so happy we didn't go to Carbondale, which we were hoping to avoid anyway thinking it would be a traffic nightmare.

 

Clear Outside turned out to be on-target by the hour about cloud cover, and 15 minutes before totality, we knew we were safe. We must've sat in that park (which was hardly crowded; maybe 500 people) for four and a half hours, and the sun was obscured for maybe 20 seconds, total. And since we were north of Chester, Carbondale, Perryville, etc., that 19 seconds less of totality probably saved us four or five hours, maybe more, of traffic. We got back to the Chicago area in six and a half hours; the next day, others were reporting 12-15 hours.

 

So, an overall wonderful experience. I don't know how accurate Clear Outside usually is, but they were dead-on for where we were.


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#164 Exeligmos

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Posted 13 September 2017 - 01:43 PM

Eclipse day weather 2017 -- My thoughts leading up to and after the big day in Kansas City....

 

1. Main mid/high cloud axis - This vast curving area of clouds had been indicated since the 10-day forecast had commenced. It was an early warning of a no-go zone, which included half of Missouri and most of Nebraska. Many areas turned out ok, but it was not worth the gamble.

 

2. Iowa MCS (Mesoscale Convective System) - This overnight cluster of thunderstorms in east NE and west IA had been forecast over the past few days. It did occur, and the anvil extended as expected. This is why I stayed out of central Missouri (KC to St. Louis).

 

3. Immediate KC convection - Predicted the night before. These morning storms, generated by outflow from the Iowa MCS, may have been a silver lining in the clouds for KC. They may have cleared the air in their wake just enough to leave some clear skies over the eastern side of the metro (but possibly mess things up further into Missouri). Still not worth the gamble.

 

4. SE Missouri boundary - This showed up as a sharp boundary on the NOAA eclipse visibility maps. A small chance of thunderstorms was mentioned. Cumulus congestus popped up just to our northwest. This is why I opted to not stop in SE Missouri or Illinois.

 

5. Nashville cumulus field - These clouds could have been a last-minute party crasher. I'm glad I didn't take the Nashville/TN River valley option.

 

6. Kansas storm debris - This was of minimal concern. A few wispy clouds moved in from the west, but they were never an issue, even if they were passing under the eclipse. They stayed mostly just to the north of our position (Eddyville, KY).

 

7. Lake cloud shadow - I think my decision to locate on the leeward side of a lake (Barkley) was a good one. The puffy clouds were visible all around us, but they never came overhead.

 

8. Cumulus dissipation during eclipse - This did occur, but the taller clouds remained.

 

So the best weather in the USA turned out to be Oregon through west Nebraska, Kentucky and parts of Tennessee, and portions, more or less, sprinkled in between. The worst was northwest Missouri and east Nebraska.

 

Needless to say, I'll be glued to the weather forecasts in 2024.


Edited by Exeligmos, 13 September 2017 - 02:25 PM.

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