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Eclipse Impressions from Oregon, the Coast in Pics, Video, Words

Published 08/21/2017 at 7:33 PM PDT - Updated 08/21/2017 at 7:53 PM PDT
By Andre' Hagestedt

Eclipse Impressions from Oregon, the Coast in Video, Pics, Words

(Salem, Oregon) – I'm old enough to remember the last full eclipse we had in Oregon in 1979, and it was a dud thanks to cloud cover. So that's all I remember. I don't even remember what I saw.

Today's total eclipse was a different story around Oregon and even the slightly cloudy Oregon coast. In spite of all the over-hype and mega warnings, and then the let down of lack of business and bodies in some tourist areas, this was definitely worth it.

And I have pictures and video to prove it. Here, however, I wasn't on the Oregon coast but in Salem. I just did not want to take any chances. That decision proved worth it as well.

I got up later than I intended, around 10 a.m. This didn't leave me much time to set up the two video cams and one SLR, so immediately I'm in a groggy panic. Totality is only 17 minutes away. Nothing like fumbling around with technology when you're not all there.

My first look at the eclipse is indeed a surreal kind of dusk: it's a blue sky in Salem but strangely a much darker shade, and you're not seeing the oranges and reds of sunset you usually see at this hour. That's because the sun is low on the horizon at the end of the day, which blocks out different bands of colors as it descends. Here, it's just one object blocking the sun in the midst of a deep blue sky.

What a wild sight, just a few minutes before totality. But nothing compared to when that sun is abruptly blocked out, evenly on all sides. It took me by surprise. That luminous ring and the deep, dark shade of blue above us was beyond surreal. Stunning. Breathtaking. I'm still struggling to find words.

Oregon Eclipse: totality dissipates FAST

#OReclipse Video Totality waning - quickly. Taken just now from Salem, Or. From

Posted by Oregon Coast Beach Connection on Monday, August 21, 2017

All of a sudden I could look at it for a few brief moments. I could see this with the naked eye.

Unfortunately, I couldn't live long in that moment. I was vastly under prepared in getting my SLR gear on the right settings and took a few photos in a panic. As a bit of an experiment, I used my trusty Cannon to take video, but it didn't seem like this was working well. Then the sun came out from behind the moon and totality ended, and I abandoned taking moving pictures. Not until I looked at all of it on the computer a few minutes later did I realize the video more than worked – and I got a great sequence of the sun emerging from totality.

On the Oregon coast, the Oregon Coast Beach Connection Facebook page was filled with fascinating insights and descriptions of how it all went down over there. There was a lot of surprise about how it did not get entirely pitch black.

One reaction from the coast: “ It got pretty dark. Not pitch black but inside the house you needed the lights on. It cooled off a bit too. Not as much as I thought it was going to.”

On the beaches in places like Lincoln City and Depoe Bay, there was a layer of clouds – but a thin one. In Newport, resident Deb Trusty described the scene from her neighborhood as the whole area cheered. “Did it feel elemental and mysterious? Yes.” she said.

Indeed, the reactions in Salem were what I noticed most. I was so caught up in the technical struggle I didn't notice what the animals did or didn't do.

Just as the sun was covered up, I heard an enormous cheer and applause; a roaring crowd. This was odd as the sound should be much more spread out up and down this street. It took me an hour to realize this roar was from the OMSI event nearby: the fairgrounds are only about two blocks from my brother's house. That too was surreal.

Then some in the neighborhood launched fireworks, at least two different homes by my estimation. One of my brother's dogs was a stress case for most of the day after that.

Meanwhile, my brother had rigged up the old telescope from '70s we grew up with to project the eclipse onto paper. This was fascinating as he caught a bundle of sunspots. I felt closer to Neil Degrasse-Tyson than ever.

Now comes the wait to get home. Traffic from Salem to Portland as I write this is a substantial mess. Yet I bask in this glow still – the post-eclipse glow of a wispy glow around the moon and a once-in-a-lifetime event. Where to stay in this area - Where to eat - Maps and Virtual Tours

Posted by Oregon Coast Beach Connection on Monday, August 21, 2017

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