Countdown to the Solar Eclipse Is On

Less than 48 hours until the 1st Solar Eclipse in North America Since 1979

The strong storms that moved through the Mid-Atlantic on Friday are gone, and fair weather has moved in for the most part over the Garden State. There was an area of thunderstorms pushing through Central Pennsylvania earlier tonight as the result of an upper level low that moved through Ohio and Western Pennsylvania earlier on Saturday.

This upper level low has produced a bow echo with these storms, but they are likely not going to affect New Jersey. There could be some clouds that we could be dealing with at times over the next few days, but conditions are expected to be mostly sunny, which looks good for the eclipse that is expected to begin across New Jersey a few minutes before 1:30 PM on Monday afternoon.

Since New Jersey is not in the path of totality, which means it is not in the area where there will be a complete eclipse. However, it will still get about 75 percent of totality so many across the Garden State will be able to see a good sky show. If you have been trying to get a pair of solar eclipse glasses like I have over the past few days, you are running out of options.

Stores such as Lowe’s and 7-Eleven, which have been selling eclipse glasses are out of stock. Meanwhile, there are some local libraries that may offer a pair although mine didn’t have any, and actually never received them. According to Friday’s,, Unique Photo on Route 46 West in Fairfield, and B & H Photo in New York City still have glasses in stock, or will be restocking them. However, to have a good chance to get the glasses in time, orders had to be made within the past 24 hours. Otherwise, you will have to get them in person.

This will be the first total solar eclipse to occur across North America since February, 1979. Back then, I was in 3rd grade, and I do recall that the weather didn’t cooperate here in New Jersey. Instead skies were cloudy on that day. I recalled that I stayed home from school that day, and ended up watching the live news coverage of the 1979 eclipse on television. I can recall hearing on TV that the next eclipse wouldn’t be until 2017, and wondered if I would ever see it.

As Monday’s date has become closer, I have become more excited, but also more cautious since the weather played a factor in the last one in 1979, and forecasts earlier in the week suggested that clouds would affect the viewing of this one. The weather forecast has been much more promising since then, especially now that Friday’s storms have pushed through. There is still a chance that clouds could hinder viewing on Monday, but the latest forecast by the NWS office in Mount Holly is calling for sunny skies with temperatures in the upper 80s in Middlesex County.

The next chance you have to see a total eclipse here in the United States will not be until April 8, 2024. After that, you will have to wait a little more than 20 years to see the next one on August 23, 2044. Then, a year later, there will be a chance for another one on August 12, 2045.