In a recent poll, Arkansas was ranked #5 in states most excited to see the total solar eclipse on Apri 8, and Texas was ranked #8. Did you know there are at several ways to watch the eclipse safely?

Many of you may already have your solar eclipse glasses or some form of watching the eclipse but did you know you can watch the eclipse through the shadows of tree leaves without looking directly at the sun?

That's right and it gives off a pretty cool effect if you ask me, almost a ripple effect.

YouTube, Scandoulousbob
YouTube, Scandoulousbob

Shadow of Tree Leaves

YouTube, Wobbly Otter Outdoors

This only applies if the sun is shining if it's overcast it won't work. The best effect is on a solid surface or concrete. Watch this video.

Best Way to See Shadows of Eclipse

  • Find a suitable tree and location
  • Look for a leafy tree that casts a shadow on the ground
  • The ground where the shadow is cast should be flat and unobstructed
  • Know the exact time the solar eclipse will occur
  • Stand or sit where you can see the shadow of the tree clearly
  • It's best to be in a position where the sun is behind the tree and the shadow is cast toward you
  • As the eclipse begins notice the crescent shape of the sun in the shadows
  • The tiny spaces between the leaves act like pinhole cameras projecting images of the eclipsed sun on the ground.
  • Use your smartphone camera to take some incredible shots of the solar eclipse on the ground

There are some other ways to watch the solar eclipse without eclipse glasses safely and they are as follows.

Colander Bowl

YouTube, Wobbly Otter Outdoors
YouTube, Wobbly Otter Outdoors

Using a good old colander does the trick too as evidenced in this video from Wobby Otter Outdoors.

Welder's Helmet


Just make sure it has a shade 14 welding lens to safely protect your eyes. Most common welder's helmets have a shade of 10 or 12 and that is not quite sufficient for watching the eclipse.

Use your Hands

Create a projector by using your hands. Watch the video to see how to do it.

Make a Pinhole Projector

This is probably one of the coolest ways to watch the solar eclipse safely. Check out Jim's story below on how to make a DIY pinhole projector.

If for some reason you are unable to watch the eclipse or you live outside the path of totality NASA will livestream the eclipse from 1 PM to 4 PM.

Right now, you can get a free pair of eclipse glasses with a purchase of the new Sonic Blackout Slush Float at participating Sonic locations.

DIY: Eclipse Viewing Without Those Special Glasses

Just click on the pic to open the YouTube video.

Gallery Credit: Jim Weaver

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