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Quick Facts - The Annular Solar Eclipse of October 14th 2023

Quick Facts - The Annular Solar Eclipse of October 14th 2023

Solar Eclipse Paths Across the USA in 2023 and 2024


What is an "Annular" Solar eclipse? 

An annular eclipse occurs when the Sun and Moon are in line as viewed from your position on Earth, producing a breathtaking brilliant ring of light as seen or photographed with safe solar filters. This mysterious spectacle happens because the Moon passes directly in front of the Sun in its most distant orbital position from Earth and therefore smallest apparent size, making it appear smaller than the Sun. Hence the Sun appears as a very bright ring, or annulus, surrounding the dark disk of the Moon. Experts recommend using safe eclipse glasses for the partial phases and solar binoculars to witness the effect of Baily's Beads which look like a row of twinkling diamonds as sunlight passes through mountain peeks as the edge of the Moon passes through the edge of the Sun. 

The annular eclipse of October 14th, 2023 is the first of two upcoming solar eclipses viewable from the US, just six months before the Mexico-US-Canada total eclipse of April 2024.

The annular eclipse path crosses the US from Oregon to Texas. It then passes over Mexico’s Yucatán peninsula, plus parts of Central America, Colombia, and Brazil. Elsewhere in the Americas—from Alaska to Argentina—a partial eclipse will be visible.


Learn more about annular eclipses from this video from NASA Goddard.

The annular eclipse path of 2023 hits land starting in the USA through Oregon, Nevada, Utah, New Mexico, Texas, California, Idaho, Colorado, and Arizona, continuing on through Mexico, Belize, Honduras, and Panama before heading out to the Atlantic Ocean.


Crossroads of the Eclipses

Want to see two different eclipses from the same place? Then join us for the Crossroads of the Eclipses Expeditions in 2023 and 2024 in the beautiful Hill Country of Texas, just west of historic San Antonio. *Watch this page for more information to sign up. 


The duration of annularity as it passes across the Americas is 4 to 5 minutes, which means that you have to plan and practice your activities. Do not wait until a few weeks before the eclipse to try to buy what you need or to practice your eclipse observing and photography techniques.  

Oregon, Nevada, Utah, New Mexico, and Texas, as well as some parts of California, Idaho, Colorado, and Arizona. The annular eclipse will continue on to Central America, passing over Mexico, Belize, Honduras, and Panama.

You want to be in the path. In the USA, roughly 6.6 million people already live in the direct line of the annular eclipse path, millions more will be flying and driving in. Be sure that you are leaving enough time to travel to your destination, and have planned to stay a day or two after the eclipse to avoid traffic of the millions of eclipse chasers who try to go home immediately following an eclipse. 

Explore Sun Catcher Eclipse Glasses are Authentic ISO Safety-Tested for Direct Observation of the Sun

Pro Tip: Eclipse Glasses sell out fast weeks before a solar eclipse occurs. The remaining few available in the remaining days can sell for extremely high prices, so buy them now and keep them in a dry, safe place. Purchase two eclipse glasses for each person that will use them. In addition be sure to buy eclipse glasses from an authentic source. During the 2017 Great Eclipse in the USA, many imported eclipse glasses used dangerous, non-tested filter material causing Amazon to issue millions of dollars in refunds. Only buy safe ISO-rated eclipse glasses such as the those direct from Explore Scientific or from authorized Explore Scientific Dealers. 

An essential way to see all phases of an annular solar eclipse is with ISO-rated and officially tested eclipse glasses. In 2017 the US market was flooded with counterfeit glasses that did not meet safety standards, make sure that what you are buying is authentic and safe. Explore Scientific Eclipse Glasses have security features to prevent counterfeiting. 

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