Creeping up on Glenelg…

Half a hundred days after landing on Mars (wow, is it that long ago? Really?!), Curiosity is almost at Glenelg, and you can almost hear the world’s Mars geology experts rubbing their hands together with glee and anticipation as they look at the latest images. Images like this…

… and this …

Looking at just those two images you can see a bewildering variety of rocks of different, exotic shapes, sizes and textures. Glenelg looks like being a geological sweetshop, with great bagfuls of stony treats scattered everywhere. If a rover landed in an area like this, with nothing else of any note nearby – no dunes, no hills, no mountain, no towering mesas and buttes – it would be happy, I think, just to roam around the area, sampling and analysing rocks until its wheels fell off. But off to Curiosity’s side IS a mountain, Mt Sharp, with its ancient layers inside which might hide traces of ancient martian life, so Glenelg will be studied, yes, but in time Curiosity will move on. In the meantime, up ahead is a wonderland of science.

As good as those individual imags are – and they’re beautiful aren’t they? – you can’t get the real feeling for what an amazing place Glenelg is unless you see them all together, in a great sweeping wide angle view. Oh, if only we had one to enlarge and droll over, picking out indiviual rocks, marvelling at their layers and broken faces, the rich variety of colours and shapes, wouldn’t that be something..?

Yeah, it would… it is… 😉

Seriously, just forget doing anything else for the next few minutes and click on that image to enlarge it, then just spend some quality time on Mars, panning back and forth, picking out any rocks which catch your eye. You’ll wish you were there, on the floor of Gale, walking around that scene, bending down to look more closely at the beautiful rocks scattered all around.

Here’s a sharpened and enhanced version…

Fantastic place Curiosity has landed in. And there are more images coming in as I speak, but I have to get other writing jobs done, so they’ll have to wait for another time!


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