Boaters plan to watch eclipse from Mississippi River -

Boaters plan to watch eclipse from Mississippi River

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Mississippi River. Credit: KMOV Mississippi River. Credit: KMOV
ALTON, Ill. ( -

Rick Phillips and his friends wanted a unique way to see the total eclipse, so they're planning to be on boats on the Mississippi River on Monday.

He told News 4 he thinks there'll be fewer distractions and it'll be a more personal experience.

"There's no lights, no honking, no anything. Just private," said Phillips.

Phillips said he and five other boat owners will set out from the Alton Marina with a group of more than 20 friends with plans to anchor somewhere in southern Missouri in the middle of the path of the eclipse. He said they'll have to travel through two locks and dams, avoid barge traffic and find a cove to anchor in which will protect them from the river's strong current.

Phillips said, "We'll go south of Ste. Genevieve till we find the spot that is, we're thinking the Kaskaskia River is probably the safest area but when we get down there we'll know more about where we want to stop."

Because the path of the river follows the path of the eclipse through southern Missouri, at least 70 miles of the Mississippi River will be in the zone of totality. 

The U.S. Coast Guard said it plans to have extra boats and people out on the river in anticipation of increased boat traffic during the eclipse.

Commander Susana Lee told News 4, "What we're planning to do is be on the water with presence and we're going to have our focus on the safety of the public and public welfare."

The Missouri State Highway Patrol said it would have all available troopers from its marine division out on lakes and rivers across the state to keep boaters safe and respond to emergencies during the eclipse.

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