Was there a better place to have a look at the dark side of the moon easing across the summer sun than from the Pothole Rocks at Conewago Falls? O.K., alright, so there must have been a venue or two with bigger crowds, grand emotions, prepared foods, and near darkness, but the pseudolunar landscape of the falls seemed like an ideal observation point for the great North American solar eclipse of 2017.
Being the only person on the entire falls had its advantages, not the least of which was the luxury of pointing the camera directly at the sun and clicking off a few shots without getting funny looks and scolding comments. Priceless solitude.
If you think it looks like the above photograph was taken in a house of mirrors, then you’re pretty sharp. You’ve got it figured out. After getting a bad case of welder’s burns on the first day of a job at a metal fabricating shop during my teen years, I learned the value of a four dollar piece of glass.
For those of you who prefer not to look at the sun, even with protection (I heard those S.P.F. 30 sunblock eye drops were a fraud…I hope you didn’t buy any.), here is the indirect viewing method as it happened today.
If you were to our south in the path of totality for this eclipse, you probably noted reactions by flora and fauna. Here, there was really not much to report. The leaves of Partridge Pea didn’t fold for the night, birds didn’t fly away to roost, and the chorus of evening and nighttime singing insects didn’t get cranked up. The only sensation was the reduced brightness of the sun, as if a really dark cloud was filtering the light without changing its color or eliminating shadows. And that was the great solar eclipse of 2017.