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Total solar eclipse coming in April; where to view in Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Maine and Vermont

Where to view the 2024 total solar eclipse
Best places to view the total solar eclipse in April 04:04

BOSTON - A total solar eclipse, one of the most exciting astronomical phenomena, is approaching. On April 8, 2024, a large portion of the United States will be treated to the eclipse and you will be able to see it in Massachusetts. 

The view in northern New England will be even better. Click on the links for eclipse guides to New Hampshire, Vermont and Maine.

You don't have to be in the path of totality. There will be a little something for everyone in the United States that day.

However, if you have the chance, I would HIGHLY recommend a road trip to experience what many describe as a once-in-a-lifetime event. 

Best places to see the total solar eclipse

The "path of totality" in the map below refers to the track across land where the sun will be completely covered by the moon. This is a relatively narrow path, only a little over 100 miles across at any given time. It will travel from Texas through the midwest and finally, pass right through northern New England.

WBZ-TV graphic CBS Boston

In order to get underneath this narrow path of totality here in New England, you will need to head north.

In Vermont, it's north of Middlebury

In New Hampshire, in or north of Lancaster.

In Maine, the path will stretch from about Rangely to Presque Isle.

WBZ-TV graphic CBS Boston

In most of these locations, you will get only a few minutes in totality and the New England window is between 3:25 p.m. and 3:35 p.m.

The total solar eclipse view in Massachusetts

Can't get the day off? Down here in southern New England, we will experience more than 90% totality.

In Boston, the partial eclipse will begin at 2:16 p.m. and end at 4:39 p.m. with maximum (about 93%) occurring at 3:29 p.m.

WBZ-TV graphic CBS Boston

You might be saying to yourself. - why would I bother driving 3 hours up north when I can get 93% right here in my backyard?

Trust me, it is well worth the drive and effort!

During a 93% totality, or even as high as 99% you will notice a crescent sun and a bit of a dimming of the daylight. It's kind of cool and kind of meh.

One-hundred-percent totality is a completely different and amazing experience! Day turns to night, and you see the amazing solar corona, essentially the darkness of the moon surrounded by a ring of fire.

You will not be disappointed!

Wear eclipse glasses  

Either way, whether you are planning to travel to the path of totality or checking out a lesser, partial eclipse locally, you will need to get some eclipse glasses to protect your eyes, or make a pinhole viewer.

Make sure they are approved by the American Astronomical Society. They are pretty cheap, usually only a few bucks online.

Of course, all of this will be for nothing if the weather doesn't cooperate on April 8th.

And, as you would expect, New England has the least chance of clear skies of anyone in the country. April certainly isn't one of our sunnier months, especially up north. For this reason, lots of folks have planned vacations to Texas, where your chances are much greater.

When is the next total solar eclipse?

If you miss this opportunity, you are going to have to wait a bit for the next chance, say about 55 years!

The next time our part of the world will experience a total solar eclipse will be May 1, 2079.

This one will occur around sunrise and just barely scrape portions of the northeast, including Boston! 

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