Visiting Arizona’s Meteor Crater
Photo courtesy of Meteor Crater Enterprises, Inc.
Arizona’s Meteor Crater is one of the most unusual and fascinating sites we’ve encountered.
It boggles the mind to consider that this crater was formed an estimated 50,000 years ago by a meteor traveling at speeds nearing 40,000 miles per hour resulting in an impact that scientists argue was the equivalent of 20 million tons of TNT.
Arizona Meteor Crater Fun Facts
- Meteor Crater is the best preserved, first-proven impact site in the world.
- It is nearly one mile across, 2.4 miles in circumference, and more than 500 feet deep. A 60-story building could rest on its floor and not be as high as the crater rim. Twenty football fields could be put on its floor and more than 2 million fans could watch games from the crater walls.
- The topographical terrain of Meteor Crater so closely resembles that of the moon and other planets, NASA made it the official training site for Apollo astronauts.
- The movie “Star Man” and numerous documentaries have been filmed at Meteor Crater.
Admission to Meteor Crater includes 3 lookout points on the rim of the crater, an Interactive Discovery Center, a theater showing the movie “Collisions and Impacts” as well as a guided tour on the rim of the crater.
I snapped the photograph above as our hilarious tour guide Eduardo was sharing some of the fascinating scientific understandings and history of Meteor Crater. Our guided hike lasted an hour and is absolutely a not-to-be-missed part of anyone’s visit.
Although it’s hard to see in my panoramic photograph, the bottom of the crater is over 500 feet down! That means you could stack nearly four Statue of Liberty’s atop one another in this massive crater!
We greatly enjoyed our visit to the Meteor Crater and highly recommend a visit when you’re exploring northern Arizona.
Meteor Crater is located off I-40 at exit 233, Meteor Crater Road, then 6 miles south on the paved road. 35 miles east of Flagstaff, 20 miles west of Winslow, in Arizona. (Google Map Link)
Disclosure: our media visit was provided by the kind folks at Meteor Crater Enterprises, Inc. Thanks!