Get your stylish eclipse glasses ready. On April 8, 2024, a total solar eclipse will darken the skies of North America. And one of those skies is over McCurtain County, Oklahoma.
If you’re looking for the best place to see the 2024 total solar eclipse, set your sights on cabin country. Over 31 miles of southeastern Oklahoma sit soundly in the path of totality, including Broken Bow, Beavers Bend State Park, and Hochatown.
Thousands of people are already planning to make the once-in-a-lifetime road trip to McCurtain County. If you’re hoping to catch a glimpse too, here’s what you need to know.
What to Expect
During the Eclipse
In McCurtain County, it all begins Monday, April 8th at 12:18 p.m. CST with the partial solar eclipse. You’ll want to make sure you’re settled at your viewing place at this time, as crowds are expected to be large and it could be difficult to get around, especially in popular areas around Beavers Bend State Park and Broken Bow Lake.
The total solar eclipse (aka what you came for) will start at 1:45 p.m. and last until roughly 1:50 p.m. The sky will darken to dusk or dawn levels of light, wildlife will go silent, and temperatures may drop 10-15 degrees. If you listen closely, you might even hear some pots and pans banging together, as is tradition with the Choctaw tribe that calls the area home.
Listen to Dawn Standridge of Wheelock Academy as she tells the Choctaw story of Funi Lusa and the solar eclipse.
After the Eclipse
Just because the eclipse is over doesn’t mean the fun is. Hochatown, Broken Bow, Beavers Bend, and Idabel are all expected to see double or triple the regular amount of visitors over the eclipse weekend. To avoid heavy traffic, we recommend arriving at your cabin a few days early and departing on Tuesday or Wednesday. Hey, more time for horseback riding, fishing, and ziplining in cabin country.
Where to Stay
From cabins to RV parks and everything in between, you’ve got your pick of solar eclipse stages. But word to the wise, book now. Like, right now. The eclipse may still be months away, but reservations are already filling quickly for this historic show in the sky.
The best place to catch the eclipse is on the porch of a luxury cabin, maybe shoulder deep in a hot tub or with hot dogs around a midday campfire. Over 3,000 cabins are happy to play host, with stays for every budget, group size, and amenity need.
On average, the entire Broken Bow area will be in the path of totality for 4 minutes and 18 seconds. But if you want to squeeze out a few extra moments, try to find a cabin in Haworth, Eagletown, Idabel, or Broken Bow proper.
Camping & RVs
If you’re planning to camp, be sure to book your campsite now too. Campsite and RV parking spots are extremely limited and are expected to completely fill up. Eight camping areas are spread throughout Beavers Bend State Park, offering 393 campsites and over 50 tent sites. All RV and tent sites can be reserved online (we see you, planners).
A one-of-a-kind event calls for a one-of-a-kind stay. If you’re feeling a little adventurous, book one of Beavers Bend State Park’s yurts, located on the banks of the Lower Mountain Fork River at the Elm Campgrounds. The newly renovated Beavers Bend Lodge is another show-stopping stay, with every room offering uninterrupted views of Broken Bow Lake.
What to Bring
The number one thing to bring is your eclipse glasses. During the eclipse, you will literally be staring at the sun, so it’s important to gawk safely. If you forget to pick some up before getting into town, no sweat. Local shops and retailers are expected to have a limited supply for sale. And if you’re a McCurtain County newsletter subscriber, you could get your hands on an exclusive pair of collector’s edition shades!
The Adventure Begins in Your Inbox
Subscribe today for discounts and deals, travel tips, and exclusive video content.
What to Do
It’s gonna be a party down here, so get ready for loads of eclipse celebrations throughout the weekend. To stay up to date, follow McCurtain County on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and TikTok, and check in frequently with the Broken Bow and Idabel Chambers of Commerce.
Outside of the eclipse, you have plenty of ways to make McCurtain County your playground, as always. From hiking and kayaking in Beavers Bend State Park to roadside fun in Hochatown and exploring Idabel’s museums, there’s enough to make it a true trip to remember.
As with your cabin or campsite, try to book any must-do activities ahead of time to make sure you’re all set!
Get Here Already!
We’re counting down the days until the solar eclipse, and we hope to see you here too. After you book your solar eclipse stay, be sure to download the Visit McCurtain County app to prep for your trip. You’ll find activity ideas, events, and even a “My Plan” feature that lets you personalize your itinerary.
The 2024 eclipse will be here before you know it. So book your McCurtain County cabin and get here already!