What it Was Like to Experience the Solar Eclipse Around the U.S.
Skygazers across America were treated to a rare sight when the first total solar eclipse to sweep across the entire continental United States in 99 years took place on Monday, August 21.
Those on the path of totality, which stretched from Oregon to South Carolina, were able to watch as the moon fully blocked out the sun and the sky turned to twilight. Others outside of the path were able to see a partial eclipse, with the moon partly obscuring the sun to cast crescents of sunlight on the sidewalks and through the trees.
From Oregon to New York, here's what it was like to experience the total solar eclipse in the United States.
Dubbed “The Great American Eclipse,” the event gave viewers in Oregon the earliest glimpse at the celestial action.
The eclipse reached totality in locations like include Amity, Oregon, with millions coming out to stand along the 70-mile-wide path of totality and watch the sky go dark.
Ochoco National Forest, Oregon
Festivals were arranged around the country for the spectacle, including the Oregon Eclipse Festival, which took place at the Big Summit Prairie ranch in the Ochoco National Forest. Far away from populated areas, viewers could kill time before and after the eclipse by enjoying eclectic art installations and themed music stages.
Grand Teton National Park, Wyoming
Another multi-day festival called Toadstock took place on a prairie in Alliance, Nebraska, which fell directly on the path of the eclipse.
Schools around the nation also had eclipse viewings, including Southern Illinois University in Carbondale, Illinois.
Southern Illinois University
Southern Illinois was treated to the longest duration of totality during the eclipse, with viewers getting around two minutes and 40 seconds to marvel at the event.
Signs for the eclipse could be seen around Hopkinsville, Kentucky. According to NASA, it was here that the axis of the moon’s shadow could be seen pointed most directly at the center of the Earth.
Known as Hoptown by locals, Hopkinsville invited eager viewers with telescopes ready in hand to capture the event from a makeshift campground that had been set up in the city.
The area was even nicknamed Eclipseville for the event thanks to its prime location, with gazers standing on the roofs of their cars to get a closer view.
Isle of Palms, South Carolina
The Isle of Palms in South Carolina was one of the last locations where visitors could get a view of totality, with fans creating sand tributes in honor of the event's final moments.
Most locations throughout the U.S. experienced a partial eclipse. People used solar eclipse glasses to gaze at the sun, or watched for the crescent reflections through leaves, pinhole viewers, and other devices.
New York City, New York
With the moon blocking out only a portion of the sun, the sun appeared as a brilliant crescent.
Trees were another way to safely watch the eclipse, with gaps in the leaves creating tiny pinholes that cast moon-shaped images on the ground.