Montreal will see a total solar eclipse. Laval, not so much.
On April 8, 2024, a solar eclipse will cross North America. Montreal lies directly in its path.
From much of the city, the moon will appear to completely block out the sun — a total eclipse. But because Montreal Island finds itself right at the northern limit of the path of totality, areas north of the city, such as Laval, won't get to experience the full event. Instead, they'll only see a partial eclipse, where the sun peeks out from behind the moon's silhouette.
A map by Plateau Astro (@plateau_astro on Instagram), a local organization that hosts astronomy events and workshops, illustrates just how close the total solar eclipse will come to Laval without actually touching Île Jésus.
Map showing the path of the 2024 solar eclipse in the Montreal area.Courtesy of Plateau Astro
Some parts of Montreal, including Île Bizard, Montréal-Nord and Saint-Léonard, will miss out too.
But even though it might be tempting to flock to the top of Mont-Royal to try to get the best view of the astronomical event, Alabama-based eclipse chaser and photographer Gordon Telepun advises eclipse enthusiasts to get out of the city to maximize the experience.
In an April 2021 interview with MTL Blog, he suggested that the further south you go, the better.
"If you stay in the city of Montreal for the eclipse, you accept a huge decrease in the totality duration, because Montreal is located on the northern limit of the path," he said.
The best views might be closer to the U.S. border at the eclipse centerline, which, according to EclipseWise.com, represents the "locus of points of intersection of the axis of the Moon's shadow with the surface of Earth."
While on Montreal's Île des Sœurs, the totality duration would be a mere 1 minute and 47 seconds, Telepun said, the duration near the centerline would be 3 minutes and 31 seconds.
This article’s cover image was used for illustrative purposes only.