It’s been 124 years since Texans saw a total solar eclipse—and even then, not much of the state bore witness. The path of totality only brushed past our southern tip. You’d have to travel another 22 years back to 1878 to find more than just a corner of Texas experiencing totality. That year, the path spanned from East Texas to the Panhandle. This year, on April 8, the path of totality runs in the opposite direction, from the southern Hill Country to the northeast corner of Texas. 

Come that fateful day, we can confidently expect celestial wonder (even if the skies aren’t exactly clear) and busy if not stalled highways. As April 8 approaches, Texas Monthly writers have been marveling at the impressive preparations for and exorbitant costs related to the eclipse. Below, we’ve compiled some of the most eye-popping facts and figures.


The number of overnight and day-use reservations at the 31 state parks in the path of totality on April 8. 

The bookings come from people in every U.S. state and Puerto Rico. While only 35 percent of Texas’s 88 state parks fall in the path of totality, they account for more than 85 percent of total overnight and day-use reservations for the entire Texas state park system for April 8, according to Texas Parks and Wildlife. Good luck finding an available screened shelter, lodge, cabin, yurt, or even a baseball field (at the Lyndon B. Johnson State Park and Historic Site, in Johnson City)—they are all accounted for. 


The projected number of people who will travel to, through, and within Texas to see the eclipse. 

According to the Texas Department of Transportation, as many as one million travelers may hit the road (or board a plane) around April 8 to reach the path of totality within the Lone Star State.


The lowest cost of nonstop, round-trip airfare on a major carrier from Los Angeles to Dallas on the weekend leading up to the eclipse.  

For the sake of your wallets, we hope most of you are not flying from Los Angeles into Dallas, which—of Texas’s largest cities—is the most centrally located within the path of totality. As of a week before the eclipse, the cheapest nonstop, round-trip ticket on a major carrier from Los Angeles into Dallas Fort Worth International Airport will put you in Dallas by April 6, out $1,247, and back to L.A. by April 9. Those of you in San Juan, Puerto Rico, however, have yourself a slightly better deal: a round-trip, nonstop flight within the same time frame will only cost you $950. 

12 minutes and 1 second

The length of time Alex Jones’s Infowars spent spreading conspiracy theories about the eclipse on X. 

Apparently, the widely discredited conspiracy theorist Alex Jones is also a confident historian of how every ancient culture interacted with eclipses. “They used superstition to control people—the Aztecs, all the ancient cultures did it,” he said in a twelve-minute video rant. Jones went on to claim that our government is employing the same tactic, issuing disaster declarations as a “dress rehearsal” for martial law.

115 places (at least!)

The number of locations where Texans can get free eclipse glasses before April 8. 

Optical retailers such as MyEyeDr. and Warby Parker are among the many businesses handing out free eclipse glasses while supplies last. Several public institutions—including in Dallas, Austin, San Antonio, College Station, and Houston—are also providing free eclipse glasses. Who knew the eclipse would spark a form of universal health care, however small?

300 percent

The increase in brisket orders at Loop 9 BBQ in Grand Prairie (over a typical weekday in March).

What would any celebration in Texas be without brisket? Staffers at Loop 9 BBQ, situated within the path of totality in the Dallas suburb of Grand Prairie, have been preparing for months. Derek Dodd, vice president of operations, told Texas Monthly that “In addition to increased staffing, Loop 9 BBQ is doubling its ribs, tripling its pulled pork, and quadrupling its brisket orders in preparation for April 8 stargazers.”

3 and a half hours

The time Mirya Dila will be at work during the eclipse.

While many travelers are coming into Texas for the eclipse, not everyone has marked off April 8 as a special day. Mirya Dila, a junior at the University of Texas at Austin, didn’t even know there was going to be an eclipse until a friend mentioned it. “I probably would not have known that it was a thing,” Dila, who works as a barista at Starbucks, said. 

901 percent

The increase in Texas’s population since the last total eclipse in the state, back in 1900.

That’s a lot more Texans!

600 percent

The increase in searches for Airbnb listings in Texas for the solar eclipse weekend.

This surge in searches for new and active listings is compared to the same time period in 2023, according to an Airbnb representative. 

4 minutes and 22 seconds

The length of time it’s safe to look at the sun without eclipse glasses in the North Texas city of Hillsboro.

“When you’re in totality, take off your eclipse glasses and look directly at the sun, because that is the absolutely beautiful part of a total solar eclipse,” said Michael Kirk, a research scientist at NASA.

11 seconds

The length of time it’s safe to do the same thing in the Austin suburb of Manor.

Because the totality lasts only a few seconds in some parts of the state, many viewers might as well just keep those eclipse glasses on.


The number of Texans who will be under a disaster declaration.

Roughly two million Texans will be under a disaster declaration during the day of the eclipse. Eight counties and two cities have already issued disaster declarations, including Travis, Coryell, and Kaufman counties. This doesn’t mean the end is nigh: issuing these declarations in advance allows local governments to access state aid and mobilize resources to prepare for the surge in visitors.


The number of confused amphibian and reptile species in Texas.

Many animals act strangely during a solar eclipse. Crickets chirp, flamingos huddle around their young, and giraffes run wild. In 1991, researchers in Mexico found that as an eclipse approached, lizards exhibited nighttime behavior, closing their eyes and seeking cover under rocks. Texas is home to an impressive 71 amphibians and 160 reptile species, and many of them are likely to behave a bit strangely, said Lee Fitzgerald, a herpetologist at Texas A&M University. But don’t expect any dramatic changes. “I don’t think all of the frogs are going to suddenly be going into full-blown nighttime chorusing mode,” Fitzgerald said. “You just might hear some additional croaking during the day.”

25 percent to 30 percent

The increase in demand for astrology readings.

If you’ve been feeling antsy lately, it may have something to do with the stars. Solar and lunar eclipses come in pairs, separated by roughly two weeks. These eclipse “seasons” have led many seekers to learn more about their horoscope. “It’s really an opportunistic time. And I think people feel that unconsciously,” explained Nan Hall Linke, a Houston-based astrologer.

Astrologers are also in high demand for eclipse parties. Dallas astrologer Chels Holmes and her colleagues have had to turn down numerous event invitations. “I’ve had probably like twenty-five to thirty percent more [requests for readings] than I do during a normal eclipse season,” she said.