a few minutes of night in broad daylight

a few minutes of night in broad daylight

A rare total eclipse crossed the northern American continent on Monday, April 8, from Mexico to Canada via the United States, a spectacular celestial event that was admired by millions of people. Our correspondents in Texas (United States) and Quebec (Canada), two of the three countries covered by the eclipse, tell what they saw.

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In city after city, the cries of amazed crowds followed as they were plunged into darkness in broad daylight, according to NASA’s live video broadcast (see the start of the eclipse from 1h16min35′, in Mazatlan, Mexico or 1h41 in Texas).

During this astronomical phenomenon, the moon is placed between the sun and the earth. The event began at 6:07 p.m. UT on the Pacific coast of Mexico. “ It was spectacular, I’ve never seen anything like it “, Paulina Nava, 36, a resident of Mazatlan, where tourists flocked, told AFP. “ I looked at the reaction of the people around me and it was incredible! “, she added, recounting that some applauded while others hugged.

Read alsoMillions expected to observe total solar eclipse in North America

The path of the eclipse then crossed 15 American states, from Texas to Maine. In Texas, some 2,000 people came to Stonehenge II Park, in the town of Ingram, reports the AFP journalist present on site. This location in the southern United States was in the “path of totality” of the eclipse. At 1:32 p.m. sharp, a black sun overlooked this site populated with replicas of the famous prehistoric stone structures visible in England. Enough to create a mystical atmosphere in this unusual darkness.

4 minutes and 13 seconds during which a simple halo surrounds the moon, describes our special correspondent in Waco (Texas) Thomas Harms. A rare and unmissable experience for Daniel Fast, who came with his whole family. “ It’s cool, it’s unique, it’s a superb, inspiring experience that touches everyone. But we cannot relive it, like climbing a mountain, we will have to look for it next time if we want to relive the experience the next time it happens. »

Everyone reacted in their own way, the birds went to bed before realizing that the sun was coming back, the automatic street lights turned on in the face of this darkness. And all of a sudden, ten degrees cooler. Meghan is still overcome with emotion. “ My daughter and I cried. I can’t explain it, I was overwhelmed by what I saw and it brought me to tears. »

When the schools in the region did not close, it was the parents who encouraged them to skip school, to experience this natural science experience live. “ I’m also a teacher, and I said this time, no, I’m also taking the day off… “, confides this woman.

Once the eclipse passed, the children resumed their games, as if nothing had happened. But for this experience will still remain engraved in them…

The solar eclipse ended its course in eastern Canada. More than six million Canadians were able to admire this total or partial solar eclipse depending on the region where they were. Southern Quebec, as well as eastern Canada, benefited from clear weather allowing us to see nightfall in the middle of the day. Gatherings took place everywhere. Our correspondent in Quebec, Pascale Guéricolasmet Quebecers who experienced this exceptional moment.

“We hardly see anything anymore!” : the eclipse seen from Canada

In total, the Moon’s shadow took about an hour and a half to travel over the three countries. In the United States alone, more than 30 million people lived in the area where the total eclipse was visible, lasting a few minutes at most.