Warning Illinois solar eclipse enthusiasts, some potential bummer news is ahead.

Will the 2024 Solar Eclipse Be Less Visible in Illinois?

Picture this; you've got your solar glasses ready, your perfect viewing spot picked out, and you're eagerly anticipating the upcoming solar eclipse. But hold on, here comes a plot twist!

Solar Eclipse Viewing Tips
Scott Olson, Getty Images

Rumor has it that the map outlining the eclipse path might not be as accurate as we once thought. So, before you get too comfy in your lawn chair, let's dive into why the experts are raising some eyebrows about whether Illinois will get its full share of the cosmic show.

Experts Say the 2024 Map of Eclipse Totality is Inaccurate

Before we dive into the specifics let me first say this, the scientific jargon I am about to share is well above my pay grade, but here is what I believe it is saying;

Illinois IS still on the path of totality, but the area it covers will be more narrow than experts originally predicted.


Here comes the official science stuff...

According to an article from WGN TV;

Since the late 1800s, eclipse calculations have commonly used a solar radius of 959.63 arc seconds (which is one 3,600th of a degree).


Measurements and observations in the last decade have demonstrated that this value is slightly too small.

So, what does this actually mean for Illinois eclipse viewers? Basically, the actual path "trims about 2,000 feet from the edges of the path of totality as it is currently shown on maps", meaning for the longest and best totality viewing times you need to be at the center of Illinois' path around 2 p.m. CST on April 8...

Google Maps
Google Maps


Will driving to Southern Illinois for a less than 5 minute show be worth it? Probably. We won't see a show like this again until of August of 2044!

READ MORE: Important Eclipse Safety Reminders for Illinois Drivers

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