At 2:41 p.m. on Monday, August 21, 2017, viewers who have gathered in the Greater Columbia, S.C., area will experience the longest period of 100% total eclipse for a metro area on the entire East Coast of the United States — ranging from 2 minutes and 30 seconds to 2 minutes and 36 seconds of total darkness.
Experts estimate that this total solar eclipse will be the most watched eclipse in the history of the world as we know it. Only those in the “path of totality” will have the extremely rare, awe-inspiring experience of witnessing a 100% total eclipse.
Notably, the partial eclipse before and after totality is not visible without glasses, since the sun is still so bright even up to the final moments of the moon covering the sun. It is of crucial importance that anyone planning to watch the partial eclipse leading up to and after totality protect their eyes with certified eclipse viewing glasses or safety film.
Protect your eyes during the “before and after” partial eclipse phases, but remove your eclipse glasses when the sky goes dark during totality.