The First Time


Every total eclipse is unique and different.  But the first time is the most powerful and impactful.

In the video to the right, I talk about my first total eclipse experience and the impact it had.  This was recorded during a recent interview with Sarah Scoles for Discover Magazine.  I, like most people, struggle to find the words. 

My first total solar eclipse was in 1999. It was such an unexpected, emotional, intense, gob-smacking, awesome experience. Even though I knew what was going to happen, I had no idea that it would be so immersive. This profound moment changed my life. I immediately became an eclipse chaser – even before I knew there was such a thing.

I wrote in detail about my first time in Chapter One of Total Addiction: The Life of an Eclipse Chaser. This was reprinted as an article for the Astronomical Association of the Pacific and can be viewed here.

“The most common phrase you hear right after every total solar eclipse is this – when is the next one?”



I believe that personal stories are the way in which people can really understand how amazing the experience is.

I will be adding a gallery of people’s first-time stories and experiences here.  The focus will be on the eclipse itself, not any travel associated with getting to your destination.  Please get in touch if you would like to add your story or video.

Pam Hine, England. View Website

Yannick, Wine Merchant, Plymouth


“I was surprised at how scary the eclipsed Sun looked to me. I was looking at it thinking, “Oh this isn’t good. That’s not right”. “

“Seeing the darkness of the Moon with the halo and light behind was an incredible sight.”

“I was surprised by how light it did stay, how large the corona was, and the sudden change between darkness and light. “

“I have felt in awe before, but this was something else entirely. “