A solar eclipse is forecast to reach almost the entire continental United States on Aug. 21, 2021. But the best view of the phenomenon is expected to be from parts of western North America and parts of western South America.
A partial eclipse will reach the eastern mainland of the country around 4 p.m. Eastern. At 7 p.m., the maximum eclipse will reach Idaho, Wyoming, Nebraska, South Dakota, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Nebraska, Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, Illinois, Kentucky, Tennessee, Indiana, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, Alabama, Texas, Louisiana, Florida, North Carolina, and the Carolinas.
Most everyone else will have a partial eclipse starting at 11:30 a.m. Eastern. These are more of a distraction to the sun than to the moon. The total eclipse will only be visible to a small sliver of the country, including Oregon, Idaho, Wyoming, Nebraska, South Dakota, Iowa, Nebraska, Kansas, Missouri, Alabama, Georgia, Florida, Kentucky, Tennessee, Indiana, North Carolina, South Carolina, and North Dakota.
Observers looking toward the western ends of the path should look up toward the horizon. If the eclipse is a bit closer to the horizon, or if a sunset isn’t visible, keep looking upward until the moon begins to completely block the sun and then look again.