Preparing for the 2024 Solar Eclipse in Maine

We are very close to experiencing an exceptional celestial event: the total solar eclipse that will happen on April 8, 2024. The Great North American Solar Eclipse will be visible from many cities that fall within a 124-mile-wide path stretching across parts of Mexico, the United States and Canada.

A total solar eclipse is not a sight to be missed. In 2017, when people in the United States got a chance to witness the first total solar eclipse in nearly 40 years, the awe-inspiring moment became a social event, with more than 80% of the adult population showing up to enjoy the nighttime feels in the middle of the day. People can enjoy the pleasant atmosphere by taking out their lawn chairs, hammocks and picnic blankets to gaze at the majestic sky views.

A total solar eclipse occurs because, from Earth, the moon and the sun appear almost the same size in the sky. This is because the sun is approximately 400 times farther away than the moon and also 400 times larger. So when the moon passes directly between Earth and the sun, the sun gets entirely blocked by the (relatively) pitch-black lunar disk, which creates a nighttime effect.

Path of Totality

The path of totality for the 2024 eclipse will follow a narrow corridor covering parts of Maine, Pennsylvania, Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Ohio, Oklahoma, Texas, Arkansas, Missouri, Kentucky, New York, Vermont and New Hampshire. In Maine, Houlton will be the last spot in the United States to witness the event.

There are plenty of other spots in Maine where you can view the solar eclipse. Maine Eclipse 2024 will last for about 3 ½ minutes and can be viewed from multiple cities. While some cities in Maine may experience the solar eclipse for less than a minute, others such as Amity, Chesuncook, Cary, Crystal, Dennistown, Dyer Brook, Dyerville, Harvey, East Hodgdon, Griswold, Hawkins, Houlton, Jackman, Morkill and many others will experience the eclipse for over three minutes.

Most northern cities in Maine will have a great view of the eclipse. Some of the best areas to witness the event include Mount Katahdin —  Maine’s highest point, in Baxter State Park. Viewing Maine Eclipse 2024 from a higher elevation will offer impressive views. Watching the solar eclipse from Mount Katahdin may allow you to witness the moon’s shadow traveling across the sky and touching the ground. You can also view the eclipse from open areas that offer uninterrupted sky views, such as the Rangeley Lakes region, Carrabassett Valley, the Caribou and Presque Isle area, Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument and Moosehead Lake.

Other places, such as Saddleback Mountain, Mount Bigelow and Sugarloaf Mountain, can also be spectacular vantage points. Maine counties that lie in the path of totality include Somerset, Washington, Aroostook, Piscataquis, Franklin, Penobscot and Oxford.

What Time Will the 2024 Eclipse Happen?

The solar eclipse in 2024 will start at 10:51 a.m. local time in Mazatlán, Mexico, and move slowly towards Labrador and Newfoundland in Canada, where the eclipse will start at 4:07 p.m. local time. While these are the timings for the partial eclipse, when the moon begins covering the sun, the best show starts with the total solar eclipse as the moon completely blocks the sun’s rays and the sky goes dark.

In Maine, the centerline of the solar eclipse will enter at 2:18 p.m. EDT, while the total solar eclipse will begin at 3:28 p.m. The eclipse centerline will exit Maine and cross the U.S.-Canada border at around 4:40 p.m., bringing an end to the totality in Maine at approximately 3:35 p.m.

Duration of the 2024 Solar Eclipse

Southwest Texas will experience the longest duration of the total solar eclipse, at 4 minutes and 26 seconds, which is approximately double the duration of the 2017 solar eclipse.

Maine Eclipse 2024 will be about a minute shorter. Certain cities and towns in Maine will experience totality for over three minutes and 15 seconds.

If you’re excited to witness the spectacular event, make sure you have special eclipse sunglasses to protect your eyes from damage. It’s only safe to view the sky when the sun’s rays are entirely blocked by the moon, so don’t look up in the sky during the partial eclipse without appropriate protection for your eyes.