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The Lunar Crater National Natural Landmark is a volcanic field located 110 km east-northeast of Tonopah in Nye County, in central Nevada. The landmark covers an area of over 300 square kilometers at the southern end of the Pancake Range in the Great Basin Desert, and comprises of numerous cinder cones, outcrops of lava, elongated fissures, ash hills and craters. The most impressive of these is the 400-acre Lunar Crater, thought to have formed by several volcanic explosions, and is one of two maars in the volcanic field of the Pancake Range.

A maar is a shallow, broad crater formed by an explosion caused when groundwater comes into contact with hot lava or magma. A maar will almost always fill with water to form a relatively shallow crater lake.

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© Amusing Planet, 2015.


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