Mars’ Northern Chasm Looks Like Tatooine. Or Earth. Sexy.

Enlarge. | Via.

Check out that gorgeous shot. The picture is a collection of images taken by the spacecraft  Mars Odyssey over a three-year goddamn period. Stare at that, and then try and appreciate the fact that you’re looking at a fucking alien world. Faux-stoner moment, woah!

Bad Astronomy:

The valley is called Chasma Boreale (literally, northern chasm) and is formed by retreating ice in the cap. Over eons of time, as the cap evaporated and reformed, sand got caught in layers in the ice. Now, as the cap retreats again, the sand is released into the valley floor. You can see the layers in the valley wall in the image, and also dunes as the wind piles it up.

The valley is pretty deep: the walls can be as high as 1.4 kilometers (almost 0.9 miles)! That would be interesting to ski, especially in Mars’s lower gravity (0.38 of Earth’s).