Space Shuttle Endeavor’s Beautiful Time-Lapsed Final Voyage

By Nick Venable | Updated

And you think traffic is bad where you live. Consider having to drive behind the retired Space Shuttle Endeavor as it dashed through Los Angeles streets at the dizzying pace of a turtle with two broken legs. And that’s when it was actually moving. But for something as historic as this, the complaints were relatively minimal.

After riding on the back of a 747 over many California cities and landmarks last month, the 20-year-old NASA marvel spent the weekend trekking through L.A. streets on the way to its final resting place, a humongous hangar belonging to the California Science Center, where it will become part of an exhibit opening to the public on October 30th of this year.

Despite untold amounts of preparation setting the route up as best as it could, including cutting down trees and other space-saving techniques, other trees and light posts proved to be a continuous problem. But much like a stopped parade, the festivities continued whether the shuttle was moving or not. And if the trek had been as smooth as planned, perhaps the video above, comprised of over four hundred photographs time-lapsed over a beautiful little song, might not exist.

Obviously, the entire trip, which put the CSC back more than a well-spent $10 million, couldn’t be documented, but it’s impressive that each leg of the journey gets its due. For a machine that’s traveled 123 million miles, it’s rough around the edges, but it stands tall as an example of what America can do when great minds come together. The only other thing I can think of that’s been ridden that long and hard will appear on Barbara Walters’ 20/20 in a few weeks.