The first total eclipse in 26 years to darken the United States mainland hits the beach today in Oregon. At about 2:50 p.m. it will swim off shore in South Carolina, making a cross country trek that hasn’t been seen in nearly 100 years. Countless stories have appeared about the event, but there have been no warnings about what shooters can expect if they’re at the range when the two minutes or so of darkness falls. Here are some things to keep in mind.
5. Pregnant women on the firing line will magically disappear—driven indoors by the ancient belief that direct exposure to an eclipse can be dangerous to an unborn child. Pregnant men are OK under a roofed firing line.
4. If you’re in the 2 1/2-minute, total-eclipse path, now’s the time to convince your friends you really ring steel at 1,000 yards—with your .22 LR.
3. The cumulative gravity when both celestial bodies are aligned—like Charlize Theron standing directly behind Kate Upton—is irresistible. So, tides raise and bullets travel further, although the added distance is statistically less significant than the odds of the average gun writer dating either starlet.
2. There’s no epidemic of zombies coming, despite the fact the black plague was allegedly “predicted” by the fabled 3 hour and 29 minute eclipse of 1345.
1. Indoor ranges won’t be affected.