The most-viewed eclipse in history had an unexpected witness: A Google Street View car drove right to the edge of totality, offering a surprising celestial treat for visitors scoping out the event in Maryland Heights, Missouri.
The intrepid car captured the darkened sky, streetlamps flickering on and even skywatching pedestrians on the vehicle's travels through the path of the 2017 total solar eclipse in August. Michael Kentrianakis, an eclipse chaser and member of the American Astronomical Society's Solar Eclipse Task Force, told Space.com about the eye-catching view this past weekend at the 2018 Northeast Astronomy Forum (an annual gathering of thousands of skywatchers in Suffern, New York) after seeing reports of the view circulating online.
"I guess those Google vans photographing every road on the planet don't stop for nothing," Kentrianakis wrote on Facebook. "Not even during the night of a total solar eclipse." [The Most Amazing Photos of the 2017 Solar Eclipse]
Kentrianakis showed off some highlights on Facebook: a woman looking up at the sky in darkness, lighted lamps and even a "diamond ring" of light from the sun circling the dark sphere of the moon.
Check out the map below to search for your own landmarks; a drive on the streets reveals a number of routes with darkened skies, glowing clouds and passersby preparing telescopes and eclipse glasses. Just outside totality (head back one click), you can see crescent shadows forming in the shadow trees during the partial eclipse.