ROYAL ASTRONOMICAL SOCIETY OF CANADA
Standing Committee on Observational Activities
Programme for Observing the
Bulletin No. 1 Total Solar Eclipse of July 20, 1963 January 1963
Greatly encouraged by the response we have already received to the solar eclipse
circular sent out by R. V. Ramsay, National Chairman of this Committee, we are going
ahead with plans for an observation programme in which all members of the Society
and any other interested persons are invited to take part.
There are many types of observation in connection with a solar eclipse that the
amateur can undertake. While some are complicated, requiring considerable experience
and preparation, others are quite simple and need little or no optical equipment.
This means that everyone can participate in some capacity. We are working on the
outline of the programme now but before sending it out to the Centres we would wel-
come suggestions. You may have thought of some angle that we have overlooked or you
may have some special project in mind. If so, we would certainly like to hear about
it in time to include it in the programme.
The path of totality crosses rather remote regions of northern Canada and then,
as shown on the attached road map, cuts down through populated and easily accessible
areas in the Province of Quebec and the State of Maine. Some people will be going
north to see the eclipse but many more, we think, will find it easier to travel east
by the more frequented routes. We expect that some folk will want to combine their
eclipse trip with the family vacation and to view the eclipse from a location that
fits in with their holiday plans. Or small groups of friends will want to observe
together. That will be fine. Other individuals will want to join an organized group.
That will be possible, too, for although the Standing Committee is more concerned
with planning the observation programme and co-ordinating results, it will be co-
operating with the Montreal Centre in establishing two or more field stations in
the Province of Quebec, which will be close enough for us to give the matter some
personal attention. What it amounts to, then, is that under our programme members
can observe (1) as individuals, (2) as members of groups that they themselves organ-
ize, or (3) by joining a field station.
Some Centres are already planning field trips and let us hasten to say that we
do not want to interfere in any way with their plans. Our programme will simply be
available to anyone who wants to use it. We do hope, though, that everyone will
tell us about his plans and will afterwards send us copies of his reports so that
we can co-ordinate the results achieved by all members of the Society.
People travelling from a distance will need to arrange in advance for trans-
portation and accommodation. We cannot undertake to make such arrangements for
anyone, but as soon as 1963 listings are available we will send to each Centre
sample copies of leaflets covering camping sites, overnight accommodation, etc.,
in the Province of Quebec. Also, sectional topographical maps, on the scale of one
mile to the inch, which would be a help in. selecting an observing site, can be
obtained from the Queen's Printer at 50 cents a copy.
As we want to get the outline of the programme on its way to you early next
month, would you let us have your suggestions as soon as possible.
Isabel K. Williamson
National Co-ordinator 1963 Solar Eclipse
5162 Belmore Avenue,
Montreal 29, Que.
Total Solar Eclipse 1963 July 20 Bulletin 1