State campgrounds to open early 2024 for total eclipse viewing
Camping at New York state campgrounds is winding down for the year, but some will open a bit earlier next year, all for a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.
Next April, parts of New York state will see a total eclipse of the sun, and select state park campgrounds will be open for eclipse viewers. Angela Berti, a NYS Parks spokesperson, said the state received a lot of interest in staying at campgrounds to view the eclipse.
“We worked as an agency and with the governor’s office to open up parks that have camping in the areas of interest for people and make those available before the prime season for people that would like to camp and enjoy the eclipse that way,” Berti said.
A total eclipse is something the state hasn’t seen since the 1920s. Katelyn Barber, an assistant professor in the atmospheric and geological science department at SUNY Oswego, said that is part of what makes the event so special.
“The excitement is the fact that we haven’t had this opportunity in almost 100 years,” Barber said.
Barber said it is a remarkable opportunity for generations of New Yorkers and has the chance to inspire future scientists.
“The next eclipse that will be occurring in New York isn’t until 2079,” Barber said. “So this is really a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for multiple generations and really going to shape people’s futures when they go and think about science and astronomy, the atmosphere, things like that.”
Barber explained that an eclipse occurs when the moon passes between the Earth and the sun and its shadow is cast on the Earth. Eclipse viewers in western and northern New York will see the sun completely blocked by the moon.
Berti said the state is already planning on a busy April, but the state parks are ready for the challenge.
“We host holidays and the Fourth of July so large groups don’t scare us off,” Berti said.
Campsites are available from April 4-8 at the following state parks:
- Allegany State Park, 2373 ASP, Rte 1, Salamanca, NY 14779 (Allegany County), for 165 sites, including campsites, cabins, cottages, and a group camp.
- Fair Haven Beach State Park, 14985 State Park Road, Fair Haven, NY 13064 (Cayuga County) for 29 cabins and one cottage.
- Letchworth State Park, 1 Letchworth State Park, Castile, NY 14427 (Livingston/Wyoming counties) for 19 cabins and cottages. Reservations open July 5.
- Evangola State Park, 10191 Old Lake Shore Road, Irving, NY 14081 (Erie County) for 25 campsites.
- Four Mile Creek State Park, 1055 Lake Road, Youngstown, NY 14174 (Niagara County) for 50 campsites.
- Golden Hill State Park, 9691 Lower Lake Road, Barker, NY 14012 (Niagara County) for 25 campsites.
- Wellesley Island State Park, 44927 Cross Island Road, Fineview, NY 13640 (Jefferson County) for 21 cabins and cottages.
To check campsite availability for the eclipse, click here.