Meteor Crater is a meteorite impact crater located approximately 43 miles east of Flagstaff, near Winslow. The site was formerly known as the Canyon Diablo Crater, and fragments of the meteorite are officially called the Canyon Diablo Meteorite. Scientists refer to the crater as Barringer Crater in honor of Daniel Barringer who was first to suggest that it was produced by meteorite impact. The crater is privately owned by the Barringer family through their Barringer Crater Company.
Meteor Crater is the result of a piece of an iron and nickel asteroid approximately 150 feet wide traveling at 26,000 miles per hour, crashing into planet Earth. This happened about 50,000 years ago. This asteroid was likely a renegade from the asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter. Meterior Crater is nearly one mile across, 2.4 miles in circumference and more than 550 feet deep. It is an international tourist venue with outdoor observation trails, air conditioned indoor viewing, wide screen movie theater, interactive discovery center, unique gift and rock shop, and Astronaut Memorial Park at the modern Visitor Center located on the crater rim.
Meteor Crater’s “Collisions And Impacts” movie, featuring exciting 3D modeling and animation allows viewers to experience the thunderous sound and explosive fury of the meteor’s super-heated trip through the Earth’s atmosphere. Then, the spectacular result of the collision that rocked the American Southwest with the energy of more than 20 million tons of TNT can be explored first-hand just outside the Visitor Center at Meteor Crater Arizona. Go to the Meteor Crater Website for more information about this natural wonder.