The most spectacular moment of a solar eclipse is undeniably the few coveted minutes of totality. When the moon blocks our view of the sun, the excitement begins and the sky goes dark. But just how dark? Dark enough to drop temperatures significantly and see the sun’s atmospheric layer, the corona. What’s more, is we may even be able to see objects that are ordinarily visible in the night sky. While viewing totality, you may be too awestruck to notice the other objects if you don’t know what to look for. However, if you are well prepared, you may have just enough time to give these objects a quick glance too.
There will be a number of bright stars and planets just to the side of the corona. You can expect to see Mercury on the left of the sun, Mars on the right, and also Venus to the far right. In fact, Venus is bright enough to be viewed a few minutes both before and after totality. Regulus, a bright star in the constellation Leo will also be visible among several other bright stars. Be sure to take a quick peek around the sky, but remember to give the majority of your attention to the magnificence of the sun’s corona during totality.