You may have noticed our earlier discussion about the singular celestial event that’s coming to America in 2017. To refresh your memories, we’ll be enjoying a total solar eclipse over America on August 21, 2017. A special reason we’re highlighting this opportunity for RV travel again is that AAA members can save big when renting an RV to view the solar eclipse.
AAA members always enjoy RV rental discounts through El Monte RV Rental & Sales as part of their active membership. For this year’s total solar eclipse experience, the nationwide auto club is encouraging members to hit the road in an RV to find the optimal eclipse viewing sites.
This article on the 2017 eclipse in AAA’s April member newsletter offers information on where, when and how to view the eclipse. If you aren’t currently a AAA member, this link offers you the opportunity to join so you can take advantage of the RV rental discounts.
Haven’t started making plans to see the moon’s shadow completely block the sun from Earthly viewers? Here are the details you’ll need to plan your 2017 total solar eclipse RV vacation:
When Will the Eclipse Occur?
The shadow of the moon will align to blot out the sun from our view for approximately two minutes at 10:15 a.m. PDT on the Pacific Coast near Newport, Oregon. That will be the North American debut of the 2017 solar eclipse. The moon’s shadow will then block the sun from sight in an arc across the US, moving back over the Atlantic off the South Carolina coast at 2:48 pm EDT.
Where Will the Total Eclipse be Visible?
This excellent map of the eclipse trajectory shows the fourteen states (from Oregon to South Carolina) crossed by the “path of totality”. On that path, there’s a sixty-mile band of optimum viewing of the entire eclipse event. Outside that band, you won’t be able to see the total eclipse and will have to settle for partial eclipse memories.
To help you plan your eclipse-viewing RV vacation, here are some of the cities within the path of totality:
Oregon: Newport, Corvallis, Madras, Salem
Idaho: Stanley, McKay, Idaho Falls
Montana: No cities within optimum viewing band, eight miles of remote mountain terrain only
Wyoming: Grand Teton National Park, Casper, Thermopolis
Nebraska: Scott’s Bluff, Hastings, Grand Island
Kansas: Troy, Atchison, Leavenworth
Missouri: St. Joseph, Columbia
Illinois: Carbondale, Chester
Kentucky: Bowling Green, Hopkinsville
Tennessee: Nashville, Gallatin, Clarksville
Georgia: Blairsville, Clayton
North Carolina: Andrews, Clingmans Dome area of Great Smoky Mountain NP
South Carolina: Anderson, Orangeburg, Columbia
Why Rent an RV to View the Eclipse?
As any experienced RV traveler can tell you, weather changes occur when you least expect them. Viewing the eclipse in all its glory will require staying ahead of cloud cover or storms. Two planning steps can help you win the race:
- Watch local forecasts for the area where you plan to view the eclipse. If heavy cloud cover or storms are predicted, have a Plan B viewing location in mind.
- Traveling by RV allows you to change plans quickly. The flexibility to move to a better location as the event approaches may make the difference between awesome eclipse viewing memories and traveling home disappointed.
AAA and El Monte RV Rental & Sales can help you plan the perfect eclipse viewing RV vacation, but you’ll need to act fast. Campgrounds are filling rapidly, so don’t delay any longer making your plans.
Where will you be when the sun goes dark on August 21, 2017?