Annular Eclipse May 10

Submitted: Monday, Apr 22, 2013 at 11:20
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Just hoping someone may be able to help. I am planning a trip to the NT and WA early May and intend to observe the Annular eclipse near Tennant Creek. I have received detailed information from a friend in the US who is an absolute wizard on this stuff and from what I can see the central line of the eclipse will travel just south of Banka Banka station.

The central line seems to pass directly over Attack creek which is in Camps 7 NT site no 77. So my plan is to stay overnight at this spot. I have driven past this site on a number of occasions but cannot remember it or if its a suitable site.

I guess my question is, are there any eclipse wizard members of Exploroz out there who can help with further info or advice? Perhaps a more suitable location nearby.

As an aside I am new at observing and have no equipment etc to set up. We just have some basic lenses to view the eclipse so little or no set up time is required. Just get out of bed ,brew up ,and look up.
Regards
Jim
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Reply By: Nomadic Navara - Monday, Apr 22, 2013 at 12:54

Monday, Apr 22, 2013 at 12:54
Here is an aerial vies of the rest area at Attack Creek. The northern end is the better for camping but has a few trees.

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Follow Up By: JimDi - Monday, Apr 22, 2013 at 14:28

Monday, Apr 22, 2013 at 14:28
Thanks Peter,
Looks as good a place as any for an overnight stay. Hard to say from where I sit now but I may be able to sneak up a track to get a little further off the highway.
Jim
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Follow Up By: Bob Y. - Qld - Monday, Apr 22, 2013 at 20:22

Monday, Apr 22, 2013 at 20:22
Jim,

The few times I've been past that Attack Ck site lately, it's been standing room only, during the season.

That road to the east goes to Brunchilly Station, but am sure if you were to poke in that way a few clicks, you might find a less crowded spot.

Like your camper! We took delivery of one similar, from Bob in Hervey Bay, about a month ago, but we've been too busy to get a chance to test it out. Really pleased with the finished product.

Bob.

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Follow Up By: JimDi - Monday, Apr 22, 2013 at 21:11

Monday, Apr 22, 2013 at 21:11
Hello Bob,
Less crowded sounds good. I looked at that road to the east on the satellite shot Peter showed in his reply and figured it might be worth a try. Bit hard looking from a screen at home.

We have had our camper for nearly 10 months now. Happy with it but have had problems getting away. Mainly just looking after elderly relatives and then sorting out wills etc. But its all over now,thank heavens, and we are off.
We gave the camper a good shake over March, drove thru and camped in some really heavy rain. So we can attest that its waterproof. I am hoping that translates to dustproof as well. Should do. Nearly lost the foxwing awning a few times during a couple of blows down the south coast of NSW,so the foxwing is under review for this trip and its time could be limited.

We were going to start with the Simpson but will settle for the Plenty as we may get away later than anticipated. Plans are in place for a visit to Darwin to see our daughter then to Dundee beach for a spot of fishing. Gibb river rd, Mitchell plateau,Bungles,Gove and back thru Nth Qld. Really looking forward to it as we have been off the road since about february 2012.

Good luck with your camper and I hope you can get away soon.
Regards
Jim
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Follow Up By: Bob Y. - Qld - Tuesday, Apr 23, 2013 at 14:35

Tuesday, Apr 23, 2013 at 14:35
Jim,

You're obviously as rapt in your camper as we are with ours!

Plenty is a good run, with lots to see. We stayed at Gemtree, which was good, but if it's winter I'd advise showering early, as "the others" take all the hot water.

Just checked the map, and that road to Brunchilly, follows the creek for quite a while. My memories of that road are sketchy now, but do remember one stretch where the vegetation grew right up to the wheel tracks, and the road trains had pruned the shrubs into a vertical wall, maybe 3M high.

Enjoy your trip when you get away. The itinerary sounds the goods.

Bob.

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Follow Up By: JimDi - Tuesday, Apr 23, 2013 at 15:30

Tuesday, Apr 23, 2013 at 15:30
Will sneak up the track anyway and have a look. Not overly keen these days sleeping next to a highway depending on its usage and the rest area's popularity.

I wont rave on too much but the camper is great. We have over the last 17 years tried them all. Tents,two off road camper trailers, one on road caravan and one off road caravan.
This slide on has changed it all and I just wish I had learned the lesson earlier. We can pull into town and not worry about parking, dead end streets etc.
Touring is suddenly completely different. Drive down a track and not worry about turning back. Less tiredness during the trip, able to cover more distance and no hassles of holding up other traffic and so on. Camp almost anywhere we like and all the comforts. Well enough for us anyway. I wont even mention maintenance,rego,insurance etc.

Another plus is that when a caravan park offers us a postage stamp size allotment regardless of what unit we have we no longer have an argument with the manager.

Better stop now or I will run the risk of hijacking my own thread.
Regards
Jim
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Follow Up By: Bob Y. - Qld - Tuesday, Apr 23, 2013 at 15:40

Tuesday, Apr 23, 2013 at 15:40
Ha ha, I get the picture, Jim.

Would agree with all your points, but you missed a big one.........trailer/van wheel bearings.

I'm amazed how much room is in them too. No I'd better stop, I've got to go to Longreach now.

Regards,
Bob.

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Reply By: Michaeljp - Monday, Apr 22, 2013 at 14:04

Monday, Apr 22, 2013 at 14:04
http://www.joe-cali.com/eclipses/PLANNING/ASE2013/ cant help with the camp site, but the link might help others with viewing sites.
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Follow Up By: JimDi - Monday, Apr 22, 2013 at 14:31

Monday, Apr 22, 2013 at 14:31
Thanks Michael.
Jim
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Reply By: luxtourer - Monday, Apr 22, 2013 at 21:24

Monday, Apr 22, 2013 at 21:24
Yes, just you and 10,000 other people! You might also find a spot along the old section of the Stuart Hwy that branches off just north of there? Churchill's Head is on the centre line.
And you do have your eclipse glasses I assume. Being an annular "eclipse" it won't be safe to look at the sun at any stage - about 10% of the sun will still be visible even at mid "eclipse".

Cheers, John

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Follow Up By: JimDi - Monday, Apr 22, 2013 at 22:15

Monday, Apr 22, 2013 at 22:15
Hello John,
I have driven past Churchills head on a previous trip some years back. Thanks for that info. I was looking to get right under the centre line to observe it.
I might have to arrive a little earlier than anticipated, you could be right about that crowd of 10,000.

Yes, we have our eclipse glasses. They are left over from a cruise from Honolulu to Sydney. I did not realise it at the time but the passenger list was about 75% eclipse followers. The ship stopped mid ocean to watch the full eclipse. A couple of scientists were employed to give talks on the eclipse and so on.
Our dinner table each night was made up of nine people ,seven of who did not talk of anything else but the forthcoming eclipse. But the red wine flowed regardless.

So...to add enjoyment to our next trip we shall stop and watch the annular eclipse and enjoy the company of other watchers.
Regards
Jim
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Follow Up By: luxtourer - Tuesday, Apr 23, 2013 at 09:33

Tuesday, Apr 23, 2013 at 09:33
Hi Jim

Yes eclipse viewers can be a strange breed. After our experience at the Nov total eclipse, I think I might camp away from everyone if possible, then drive to a viewing point on the day! Might at least have a good night's sleep.
The website I look at shows the annular eclipse starting at Churchill's Head at 22:35:05 UTC and finishing at 22:39:32 UTC, giving over 4 minutes of annular eclipse viewing. Partial eclipse starts over an hour earlier, of course. You have to add 9 and a half hours to the above times to get local time in the NT (so 8:05:05am for the start if my maths is correct).
Hope the viewing goes well.

Cheers, John
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Follow Up By: JimDi - Tuesday, Apr 23, 2013 at 11:03

Tuesday, Apr 23, 2013 at 11:03
Thanks again John,
I remember that even on a large cruise ship the passengers guarded their space on deck. If you moved you lost your space at the railing. Its not that there was not enough room, its just that everyone wanted to lean on a railing.

Thanks for those times. The info sent by a friend from the States was a little beyond me. He is some sort of chemical engineer and sky watching is a serious hobby. Nice bloke but a bit of a geek. During a conversation when we mentioned that for a holiday we drove into the bush or desert on unsealed roads he lapsed into what I later described as appalled silence.
Regards
Jim
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