Thousands of people will turn their eyes to the sky this weekend to watch a rare solar eclipse. The moon will slide across the sun, blocking everything but a blazing halo of light in what is known as a 'ring of fire' eclipse.
The best place to view the eclipse is from the roof of a building or house. But, wherever you are, do not look directly at the sun or you could seriously injure your eyes.
Rod Guice is headed 400 miles north to Red Bluffs, just north of Chico. It is one of the best spots in California to watch the moon pass completely in front of the sun. It won't be quite as spectacular in Bakersfield, but Guice says it is still something you won't want to miss.
Stargazers know this sky spectacle only comes around every 20 years. "Things like this just remind you of how amazing this place is that we live. We got a body that's 2,200 miles in diameter crossing in front of another body that's 840,000 miles in diameter," continued Guice.
For three and a half hours Sunday, the eclipse follows an 8,500 mile path across part of the southwestern United States. "For us down into Bakersfield, we're going to see about 81% coverage and that's going to happen right around 6:36 in the evening," said Kevin Charette, 17 News Weather Forecaster.
As tempting as it may be, do not look directly at the sun or you could fry your eyes. You need special eye protection. Sunglasses won't do the trick. Astronomers recommend number 14 welding glasses.
"We don't stock it so it's kind of special. We have to special order them. This is something that is rare. Shade 14 is not something common for welders to buy," said Domingo Sanchez, Melo's Gas and Gear.
Melo's Gas and Gear can hardly keep up with the demand. By Friday afternoon, the welding supplier only had a few pairs left for the solar spectacle.
If you want to buy a pair of lenses or goggles, visit your nearest welding shop. The lenses are a few bucks while the goggles are about $20. You don't have to buy the goggles. You can just hold the lenses to your eyes.
You can also create your own contraption by punching a small pinhole in a cardboard box. Find out how by going to: