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Larry CrumplerJune 30, 2014

Field Report From Mars: Sol 3705 – June 27, 2014

• Opportunity has left the winter haven and is still driving south along the rim of Endeavour crater

• Currently exploring an outcrop a few meters from crater rim

• Power remains excellent but there is much driving ahead

Opportunity is still driving along a prominent ridge where orbital remote sensing detected the presence of an Al-OH feature. We are driving about 20 meters every few sols, and stopping to look at the local outcrops to see if we can find the source of what must be some fairly altered rocks here on the western rim of the 22 kilometer-diameter Endeavour impact crater.

Opportunity's location as of June 27, 2014

NASA / JPL-Caltech / University of Arizona / NMMNH / Larry Crumpler

Opportunity's location as of June 27, 2014

As of this sol Opportunity is approaching the end of the local ridge on the crater rim. Ahead is a long traverse up and over a mountain similar in size to the one that Spirit climbed in the Columbia Hills at Gusev crater. Opportunity must traverse over this hill to get to the next most interesting site, the so-called "smectite valley," where orbital remote sensing says there is the "mother lode of all phyllosilicate occurrences."

Sol 3044 Pancam view towards Cape Tribulation

NASA / JPL-Caltech / Cornell

Sol 3044 Pancam view towards Cape Tribulation

This view shows the current location from the perspective way back when Opportunity was at Cape York, a kilometer or so to the north. Check out the size of Cape Tribulation, the next big hill that Opportunity will need to climb in the coming months.

Opportunity's latest drive as of sol 3705

NASA / JPL-Caltech

Opportunity's latest drive as of sol 3705

Here is an overhead view of the latest drive. Opportunity just "bumped" to a small outcrop visible in this overhead projection of the Navcam panoramas. We will be here a couple of sols before moving on.

Opportunity front Hazcam view, sol 3705

NASA / JPL-Caltech

Opportunity front Hazcam view, sol 3705

And the corresponding view of the outcrop from the front Hazcams.

Pancam view looking south towards Cape Tribulation

NASA / JPL-Caltech / Cornell

Pancam view looking south towards Cape Tribulation

And part of the Pancam panorama just completed looking south from this ridge towards Cape Tribulation and beyond.

Read more: Opportunity, mission status, Mars Exploration Rovers, Mars

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Larry Crumpler
Larry Crumpler

Research Curator Volcanology and Space Sciences/Associate Research Professor for New Mexico Museum of Natural History and Science/University of New Mexico
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