Looking Back at Eagle Crater
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Looking Back at 'Eagle Crater'

March 24, 2004
This image is the first 360-degree view from the Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity's new position outside Eagle Crater, the small crater where the rover landed about two months ago. The plentiful ripples are a clear indication that wind is the primary geologic process currently in effect on the plains. The rover's tracks can be seen leading away from Eagle Crater. At the far left are two depressions - each about a meter (about 3.3 feet) across - that feature bright spots in their centers. These twin dimples might be revealing pieces of a larger outcrop that lies beneath. The depression closest to Opportunity is whimsically referred to as Homeplate and the one behind it as First Base. The backshell and parachute that helped protect the rover and deliver it safely to the surface of Mars are also visible near the horizon, at the left of the image.

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