I didn't believe it when I first heard it and still don't understand exactly what's happened, but the total solar eclipse path over southern Illinois on April 8 really has changed and been confirmed through several reputable sources.

No, it's not April 1 and this is not an April Fool's joke. That was my first response when I saw reports that the total solar eclipse path had changed for April 8. I've confirmed this through an article on Earth/Sky and also Newsweek.

The reason for these new calculations is a solar eclipse expert named John Irwin. See John's recalculated map of where the total solar eclipse will cross southern Illinois. Note that the path of totality is slightly narrower now and appears to have shifted slightly further north.

Here's the zoomed in map on southern Illinois. You won't see much variation, but it is slightly different than what was expected.

John Irwin/Google Maps
John Irwin/Google Maps

The bottom line is you probably won't have to change your travel plans, but if your previous itinerary involved trying to view totality in southern Illinois in one of the smaller towns on the perimeter of totality, you might have to change plans.

I am still trying to sort out exactly why we now have new data on the sun less than one week prior to a historic total eclipse. As for now, I wanted to get the word out that you need to make sure your plans actually include the path of totality in Illinois.

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