How we saw the eclipse on May 20, 2012

The solar eclipse a few days ago was a huge topic of conversation around town. Although Davis wasn’t in the central path that saw a total eclipse, we could definitely see the effect. At 6:30pm the sunlight started to dim, and for 20 minutes everything was cast in the kind of light you see in cheap Sci-Fi movies. It was a bit unsettling, actually, but then I have watched many of those movies and I know what typically happens (play Twilight theme).

There were no alien landings—at least not around here—but the shadows produced by the tall trees across the street were strange and fascinating.


Before I knew it, most of our neighbors had come out and we were standing around marveling at these shadows.


None of us was properly equipped to look straight at the sun, but I doubt it would have been half as interesting as these remarkable patterns.


I had certainly never seen anything like it before.


I even captured a few seconds on video. It’s nothing extraordinary, but it shows how the shadows move with the wind.


Photographers much more ambitious than me captured incredible images of this annular eclipse. Here are two of my favorites: the eclipse over Mount Shasta (where my in-laws live), and the eclipse over Shiprock Peak, New Mexico.


  1. Fascinating and wonderful! I don't think I've ever witnessed an annular eclipse before.

  2. I saw shadows like those on another blog too, so strange and beautiful! Here it was so cloudy that you couldn't even tell anything was happening.

  3. That's fantastic Gerhard, those shadows looks haunting and pretty at the same time! A very rare event, at least your area managed to experience some of the visual effects of the eclipse and you were able to take photos of it!


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