eclipse aar

After action reports from the eclipse 2017

Much of this will be raw reports in the order they were received with some conclusions tossed in.

Glendo WY to Cheyenne WY a trip that would be way under 3 hours normally took 8-10 hours after the eclipse. At some point the police had the trains stopped [so that they didn’t block the roads] in retrospect I think that they should have let the trains run. As the traffic was stopped by them, those drivers caught at the cross roads would have taken a break and shut off their vehicles. Those that were on the other side of the tracks would clear out and after the trains passed those vehicles that had been caught would have clear roads for awhile anyway.

One car that stopped wanted to have hot pop-tarts. She put the pop-tarts on the hood of her car to warm them. Another car brought out a tub of butter to spread on them… apparently a big hit! They say that there is a song about butter on pop-tarts… I have not heard it yet.

ELIMINATION still has to happen – along the road too. Rest stops were closed due to sewers backing up from over use. Most of the rest stops were full of over night campers Sunday night.

Police were imported from around the country [Chicago and Boston were at Glendo]

cell phone service was reportedly spotty due to massive use… this was not a disaster event it was only a large crowd event. Many people think that things like cell phones will always work for them – not true so plan on some sort of ‘back up comms’ .

Another caller to the radio station stated that he had left with over 3 hours to spare and did not make it in time. [Cheyenne to Casper]

several squatters noted on property – several reports about ranchers blocking their roads with their trucks and squatters pulling or pushing them out of the way so they could trespass —- not smart
also fences getting cut which allowed cows to get out. — hummm criminal trespass, criminal property damage all during a ‘big event’ in peace time…. WHAT do you think will happen at protests and real disaster events???

on the other hand some land owners were charging $1,000.00 a day to stay there and getting it in cash.

Casper to Cheyenne is normally under 3hours on I 25 and it took 8 hours after the eclipse. Denver is normally 2 hours from Cheyenne [so call it 5 hours from Casper and it took 15 for some folks.

On the local radio WYDOT reported that we had almost 600,000 more vehicles enter Wyoming for the eclipse—- that is more vehicles than the total population of Wyoming!!

2 families departed Casper after the eclipse together both headed to Brighton CO family #1 stayed on I 25 and it took them 11 hours to get home. Family #2 took the alternate routes suggested and it took them 15 hours to get to the same neighborhood

My family stayed home and watched 98% totality and BBQ it was way more fun than being stuck in traffic and it was safer.

Some folks also stayed home for many reasons. Some folks slept through it others had cloud cover and a lot of folks had to work and so missed it. Others got a better view by staying home and watching it on TV.

lessons learned

Pay attention to what happens today to help you predict future events.
Have a back up communications plan for WHEN cell service is interrupted.
Make sure you have plenty of fuel and never below half a tank.
Be able to camp out for a few hours/days for traffic to clear. Have a bob for each person in the car all the time maybe….
Have multiple routes planned out before leaving home..

A good reference is at This is book 2 about traveling and evacuation planning.

Update at 1000 hours local radio reports from Highway Patrol that there was a motorcycle V car mishap after the eclipse on Monday. Reportedly the traffic was very heavy [DAH] and the motorcycle decided to pass a line of cars because he was in a hurry….. a car had the same idea and pulled out of line to pass the line of cars too and hit the motorcycle. The motorcycle rider was killed and the driver of the car was uninjured and will not be charged. Folks bad things happen when you do dumb stuff. Slow down, pay attention and don’t be in a hurry.

Cross ref

We would of course like to hear your reports of your day of eclipse and what you learned and experienced.

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