Eclipse Day: Protect Yourself, Your Camera, and Think About Your Car

Most landscape and nature photographers shoot early and late in the day, and move around a lot, so shooting the eclipse will be a new and different thing. Here are some basic things you should do to protect yourself and your camera. Plus I have an important reminder for your car.

Your shooting location may not be close to a shady area so plan ahead.

It will be hot under the August sun in the middle of the day, especially if you spend three hours shooting from first contact to last contact. Dress cool. Wear sunscreen. Think about wearing a hat and/or having a large umbrella to keep your head out of the sun (and some of the rest of you). A lawn chair with an umbrella holder would be ideal. Have a lot of water on hand, and some kind of healthy/food/protein/snack to munch on. You will be excited about the eclipse and not thinking about food and water, but try to remember to stop and re-hydrate periodically.

Keep your camera and lens cool. Put a white cloth over them while they are out in the sun. I carry a blue cloth all the time. As a test I put it over my camera and lens while I did an hour of shooting in the middle of a hot day. The lens and most of the camera were ok, but the mirror housing of the camera was warmer than I would like. I will use white on eclipse day. Bring a white cloth to cover you backpack/camera bag if it is out in the sun.

Fill the gas tank of your car before you get to your shooting location. In some places traffic will be a nightmare after the eclipse. Be prepared in case you get stranded for hours in traffic. That is the reason for the full gas tank. That is another reason to have plenty of food and water in you car.

Stay safe out there!

The Great American Eclipse Series

The Great American Eclipse Series   –  All of my eclipse articles are listed at this link. This is the 35th article in the series.