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Culture » Culture Features

Meet These Profesh Eclipse Chasers

The world-class adventurers who pursue magic moments.



When it comes to eclipse watching, you can't be much more of a fanboy than these three. Here's a peek inside the minds of some veteran eclipse chasers.

Eclipse Chaser: David Blackmore

Age: 63

Nationality: British

Occupation: Retired

Passion: World travel, vegetarian cooking, outdoor recreation

# Total solar eclipses: 11

First total solar eclipse: August 1999 in Cornwall, England, at a 16th century castle we rented two years in advance.

Most dangerous eclipse trip: 2001 in Zambia: I was chased by a rhino, had a close encounter with a lion, startled six elephants while on foot, and was surrounded by a pack of hyenas for an entire night of camping.

Most memorable eclipse trip: 2010 in the Cook Islands: We navigated to a remote part of the South Pacific Ocean in a cargo boat via GPS, which led to two seasons of work as a cook on the same boat, touring the Cook Islands. It also led to a freelance writing gig for local Cook Island newspapers during the 2012 London Olympics.

Why I chase eclipses: I'm a traveler anyway, so why wouldn't I?

Bonus: Favorite eclipse description: "Big Jesus in the sky goes belly up." (from a Solomon Islander)

Eclipse Chaser: Greg "Brownie" Brown

Age: 49

Nationality: Australian

Occupation: Aboriginal Community Store Manager

Passion: Snake charming, reptile rescue and advocacy

# Total solar eclipses: 13

First total solar eclipse: 1976 in Melbourne, Australia.

Most dangerous eclipse trip: Colombia, 1998: I was 29, and it was my third eclipse, and I was going down there without any Spanish or any idea of where I was going. When I look back on it, I realize I was heading blindly into a situation I wasn't really sure about.

Most memorable eclipse trip: Flying over Antarctica in 2003.

Why I chase eclipses: I love the totality that goes with the totality: the places you go, the people you meet, the food you eat, the adventures you have.

Bonus: This eclipse is especially important to me, because it's my final continent to see an eclipse from.

Eclipse Chaser: Simon Macara

Age: 50

Nationality: British

Occupation: Conservationist

Other passions: Shamanism, wild cats, archeo-astronomy, aurora borealis, erupting volcanoes.

# Total solar eclipses: I've lost count! About 20?

First total solar eclipse: July 11, 1991, in Hawaii

Most dangerous eclipse: August 11, 1999, in Iran

Most memorable eclipse: November 3, 1994, in the Chilean Andes up at 3,600 meters. Perfect atmospheric conditions and an especially spectacular totality!

Why I chase eclipses: Nothing else on Earth is more moving, more satisfying and more nourishing for your soul than witnessing the sun's radiant corona in the moment of totality.

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