Sometimes I believe I have the best job in the world.

This feeling was reinforced in early April 2014, during my 19th journey to Indonesia. It was my first trip with TravelQuest’s Aram Kaprielian, and we shared some incredible experiences as we scouted far and wide for the best viewing location for the total solar eclipse (TSE) of 2016. I was honored that he asked me work with him again after the success of TSE 2012 in Port Douglas, Australia. I believe our combined expertise has created the best trip on offer in Indonesia for the March 9, 2016, total eclipse of the Sun.

We are very excited about the location we have identified as the best for the TSE viewing. Jay Anderson, renowned eclipse meteorologist and TravelQuest Trip Astronomer, dug deep into his knowledge base to pinpoint what he believes to be the location that will offer us the highest probability of eclipse-day clear skies. I can honestly say we were very excited when we arrived in the town he had identified. After two days on the ground, reviewing all the logistics and reserving all the required services, we have no doubt that we will provide TQ clients with the most seamless event possible.

In addition to the weather, another site consideration is the duration of totality. I’m pleased to say that at our site we’ll experience 2 minutes 45 seconds of darkness, one of the longest totality times possible for a land-based expedition.

Each village in Indonesia is home to an incredible character — a ‘tukang terang’ (in English, a “Rain Stopper”). These individuals are revered for their power, which is passed down through generations on the male side of the family, and reports that were related to us soon quelled our cynicism. We have our scouts out looking for a new breed — a “Cloud Stopper” for March 9, 2016 — but hopefully we will not need him.

I am very excited about renewing acquaintances with friends made during the Australia 2012 eclipse and am looking forward to making new friends in 2016 during our eclipse trip to Bali. I hope you’ll join me, and TravelQuest, as we explore the beauty and traditions of the Island of the Gods.
In my next post, I’ll tell you a little more about Bali itself and what we’ll be experiencing during our journey to totality in 2016.

Written by: Pedro O’Connor

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