The Great American Eclipse (or, Warren's Favorite Thing Ever)

We woke up like this

Hanging with our awesome friends

Last January/February Monica and I were in the states for a wedding/see everyone we knew trip. In order to see all the peoples, we divided and conquered the country (our family and friends are pretty spread out.) This meant a lot of flying between the two of us, and at some point Monica accepted vouchers for taking a later flight with United (this is before the whole ‘dragged off kicking and screaming’ incident).

So, during the two months we spent in the states, visiting our families as unemployed people getting ready to be very ‘brave’ and travel to Asia, we had an amount of money to spend on plane tickets in order to use up the voucher. The trips from Detroit to Dallas and Dallas to LAX (where our already purchased flight to Bali was leaving from) didn’t quite spend enough money.

On a whim, Monica suggested we spend a few days in Denver. “Sure,” says I, “why not.” We know people in Denver. It also is very near mountains and nice hiking stuff. And it cost only a little more than what was left on the voucher to get there. Win win win.

Turns out, the news is different in other countries. Can you, without googling it, tell me when the total eclipse was last in England? Nope. That the eclipse was not going through Australia (where we were living) meant that coverage of it was pretty minimal.

Our realization that we were going to be in Denver during the eclipse went something like this:
“Our friends from Houston are going to be in Denver when we are too!”
“Crazy! What a coincidence! Wait, the internets are telling me there is going to be a total eclipse in the states while we are there… it goes through Wyoming… when are we going to be in Denver?”
“Hold up, are we in Denver during the eclipse? Holy crap!”

Moving forward, our friends who put us up for the night, fully planned and organized a camping trip to Wyoming so all four of us could see it.

I don’t want to spend a lot of time talking about the actual eclipse (it is covered very well here and here), but I do want to say that if you failed to make a trip to see totality during the 2017 one, you absolutely need to start making plans to see the next in 2024. No joke. 90% is cool and all, but it is worth it to see 100%.

But I do want to spend a moment and laud Wyoming. Both Monica and I have been there before and both remembered it fondly, but its beauty on this trip was like wow:

I took this picture from our campsite. Seriously.

And it was that moment I saw a pale rider...

My attempts at artistic photography

Also, did you know that on Bureau of Land Management (BLM) land you can camp pretty much anywhere you want? How cool is that? We got lucky and found a few great public, free campsites, but for the future it is good to know that you aren’t SOL if the campsite is full.

After the event was done, we slowly headed back to Denver and had a great time seeing the city. It has been 13 or 14 years since I was last there, and the city was almost unrecognizable. We ate at an awesome German restaurant, drank at a cool as hell speak-easy, and had a lot of fun catching up/getting to know the wonderful people who put us up and planned the whole camping trip to Wyoming for us.


So, in the end, our trip to Denver included spending less than 36 hours actually in Denver, but loving every minute that we were there. Wyoming was super, and not just because of the giant shadow caused by the moon. What a cool last trip in the US before leaving for Asia, right?

Comments

  1. Ahhhhhh, me's jealous... about the Wyoming eclipse part. Seven. More. Years.

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