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Solar eclipse visible from 154 national parks Sunday

Sunday's solar eclipse will be the first visible in the US this century. The annular eclipse will be best seen from 33 national parks, including the Grand Canyon.

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Visitors should bring flashlights and jackets, especially if they plan to stay after the eclipse concludes.

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"People come to parks to enjoy a dark night sky, and see things like the Milky Way," Marshall said.

"We can really facilitate people seeing even daytime events," she added.

A spectacular view

But Marshall warns that, while the eclipse will make an interesting image, it won't necessarily make a great photograph.

Aiming a camera at the eclipse unprotected could damage it. Hopeful photographers need to add a solar filter to their setup, which will wash out the view of the landscape.

"The casual photographer won't be able to get a photo of the eclipse over the canyon," she said.

Instead, she urges people to enjoy the image captured in their memory.

And there will be plenty of memories made. According to Marshall, all of the campgrounds and hotels around the Grand Canyon that take reservations are booked. Though the first-come, first-serve campgrounds are still available, she anticipates that they, too, will fill quickly, leaving hopeful visitors with a drive of more than an hour to the nearest hotel.

Although only a handful of western parks will receive the full effect of the eclipse, another 125 parks lay along the path of the partial eclipse, where they will provide a stunning view to those not fortunate enough to see the complete show. From Alaska to Minnesota, national parks will catch a partial eclipse or a partial view.

"Astronomy generally is the kind of thing people look for in national parks, so we're glad to help people celebrate it here," Marshall said.

IN PICTURES: Solar eclipse

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