mpollock October 18th, 2012
Meteor Crater was named as one of Smithsonian Magazine’s “ten most spectacular geological sites.” With a diameter of over 4000 ft and a depth of ~550 ft, the nearly perfect circular crater is truly impressive. According to the tour guide, the crater floor could host 20 simultaneous football games while 2 million fans watch from the crater walls!
This is what the center of the crater floor looks like: fenced remnants of an abandoned drill shaft. In the early 1900s, a Philadelphia mining engineer named Daniel Barringer drilled the crater floor searching for a potential ore body, which he never found because researchers think that the meteorite was destroyed during the impact.
In the mid 1960s to early 1970s, NASA used the crater to train Apollo astronauts. If you look closely at the fence, there’s an American flag and an astronaut figure in the near-right corner that honors those Apollo astronauts.
Meteor Crater is definitely worth the trip. Take the guided rim tour and ask for Eduardo; he’s very knowledgeable and will have you laughing at each stop.