In anticipation of the Great American Eclipse on August 21 at 10:15 am, Oregon State Parks are expected to open approximately 1,000 more campsites to accommodate viewers.
The news comes after hotels across the state have been accused of canceling existing reservations and raising rates during the eclipse.
During the solar eclipse, the moon will completely block out the sun, with only a halo of sunlight visible in the sky. The eclipse will enter the state between Lincoln City and Newport on the coast. This cosmic event is projected to last only about two minutes. This marks the first total solar eclipse passing over the continental United States since 1979.
You may not get another chance like this, so don't sleep on it.
According to the Oregon Parks and Recreation Department all of the additional campsites will be within or near the path of totality, where a total eclipse is visible.
Unfortunately for Portlanders, the city is not within the path of totality—although we will still see a significant portion of the sun blocked out. Salem and Corvallis do fall within this range and will enjoy a better view of the total eclipse.
The department says a portion of the additional campsites will be sites that are usually first come, first serve, and the other portion will consist of sites placed in fields or parking lots. Many of the temporary sites will lack the amenities of a standard campsite like power hook ups and showers—but it's worth it for science, right?!
Chris Havel, associate director for the department, says these additional campsites are a preemptive effort by the department to accommodate the mass influx of campers during the eclipse.
"We know that some people that haven't had a chance to plan this out are gonna end up a little desperate for a place to stay and we wanna relieve that pressure," Havel tells WW. "We knew people would try and find their own way and sneak in, so we thought we would get ahead of this."
Havel says the department is reallocating staff from outside the path of totality to assist parks with higher occupancy.
Here is a list of parks where you can still reserve camp sites.
The traditional sites still available are:
Coast: Beachside, Carl G. Washburne (both outside the path of totality).
Willamette Valley: North Santiam, Cascadia (both in path of totality); Cascara Campground at Fall Creek Reservoir (outside the path of totality).
Central and Eastern: Farewell Bend, Unity Lake, Clyde Holliday, and Bates (all in path of totality); Cottonwood Canyon, Catherine Creek, Ukiah-Dale, Minam, Red Bridge, Hilgard Junction, Lake Owyhee and Jasper Point (all outside path of totality) .
These are the temporary sites available for the weekend of Aug. 18 to 21:
Oregon Coast: South Jetty at South Beach, Fogarty Creek, Driftwood Beach and Governor Patterson Memorial (all in path of totality).
Willamette Valley: Silver Falls, Willamette Mission (all in path of totality); Champoeg (on the edge of totality); Milo McIver (outside path of totality).
Central and Eastern Oregon: Smith Rock, The Cove Palisades, Farewell Bend (in path of totality); Cottonwood Canyon (outside path of totality).
The department will begin taking reservations on April 19 at 8 am. Campers must book each campsite for at least three nights at $10 to $11 a night for a temporary site and $31 a night for traditional sites with an $8 reservation fee.