TSE 2017: Eclipsing population estimates
Coverage of the August 2017 solar eclipse is brought to you by Shoshone Rose Casino and Hotel.
JACKSON HOLE, WYO – How do you double the state’s population? Blot out the sun.
A story in the Wyoming Tribune Eagle claims some experts are suggesting Wyoming could see anywhere from a quarter-million visitors to twice the state’s 585,501 population during a three-day period around August 21.
In the story, the governor’s public relations adviser Chris Mickey is quoted saying, “I can’t think of anything quite like this.”
Wyoming will be particularly blessed (cursed) with optimal viewing spanning a border-to-border swath from Jackson to Torrington. All along the “path of totality” municipalities are preparing for the land rush of this century. Not since 1918 has something like this hit the US, and not since the 1850s will the West witness such an expected throng of westward-ho sightseers.
In Jackson Hole, authorities are bracing for an estimated 50,000 to 100,000 visitors in addition to those normally expected to descend upon the valley in mid-August. At a recent meeting scoping the magnitude of the event, Emergency Management coordinator Rich Ochs and special eclipse coordinator Kathryn Brackenridge briefed the public on a few interesting side notes concerning TSE 2017.
- Parking will be next to impossible, especially along roadsides. In the park or forest, forget it. No roadside parking will be allowed on the day of the event or the night before.
- Park entrance fees will be waived on August 21 in an effort to keep traffic flowing.
- Officials warn it will be extremely difficult to get to and from the airport on August 21. If you have a flight booked for that day, consider rescheduling.
- Planning an event? If your insurance rider requires an ambulance be present, it won’t happen. They are all booked and in use.
Beginning May 13, the countdown to “100 Days Until Totality” starts for Wyoming Stargazing. The organization’s executive director Samuel Singer will be speaking at upcoming meetings about the science of the eclipse.