Views of Arizona

On the way to the airport on Sunday with my chauffeur, John Peacock, we took the opportunity to make a few detours to take in some of Arizona’s breathtaking scenery. The heat was also fairly breathtaking. I don’t really know how people manage to live out there, actually. Anyway, here are a few snaps I managed to capture with my phone camera.

The first is of course Meteor Crater, which is about 45 miles from Flagstaff:

The crater is about 170m deep and has a diameter of about 1.2km. You can see some mining equipment and other gear at the bottom. Initially people thought there would be the remains of a big iron meteorite buried underneath the crater, but magnetic tests showed that there was no so such thing. Modern understanding is that the meteorite vaporised on impact; evidence for this is found in tiny bits of fused iron that can be found as far as 7km from the impact site.

Here are another two pictures of the beautiful rocky landscape of Arizona which comprises various kinds of sandstone of different hues, including one which is just like terra cotta. Here’s an example of the spectacular formations you can find on the way from Flagstaff to Sedona:


This is Cathedral Rock in the afternoon sunshine

Well, that’s enough exotic travel pictures. Now I’m off to Swindon.

10 Responses to “Views of Arizona”

  1. Anton Garrett Says:

    Surely Arizona is no match for Swindon?

  2. Amazing how large impactors are attracted by uninhabited (o uninhabitable) areas – Meteor Crater, Namibia, Australia, Canada.. The only large city inside a crater is Johannesburg. This must keep the risk of being on the receiving end of an impact way down.

  3. Steve Warren Says:

    Next time in Sedona make time to swim at Slide Rock, a natural flume ride. Swindon competes with it’s own articificial version, the Domebusters at the Oasis centre.

  4. I went to Flagstaff back in 1994 when I took a work trip to Tucson (Steward Observatory) and went up to Flagstaff. I went to the Grand Canyon, but for some reason I didn’t make it to Meteor Crater. I regret that now, but I also did get up to Monument Valley. AZ is probably one of the most varied states I’ve been too. The Flagstaff area was quite cold when I was there (late March), but by the time I had made it down to Tucson about 3-4 days later, having passed through Arizona’s “alpine like” middle bit, it was into the desert heat of Tucson. I also managed to swing by Taliesin West in Phoenix (well, Scotsdale), to see where Frank Lloyd Wright had set up his desert home after leaving Wisconsin.

  5. Peter
    Off topic but relevant to some of your other posts…
    What do you make of Leighton Andrews’ decision to regrade the GCSE results in Wales ?
    I think its disgraceful as well as being disrespectful to the Welsh students who, when competing against English students, will be considered to have taken easier GCSEs.
    I also think it will backfire on him. Labour can barely accuse the Tories of manipulating the exam results when (a) Gove is smart enough to have lowered the pass rates without leaving a trail of evidence and (b) manipulating exam grades is precisely what Leighton Andrews has done.

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