The small La Gallega Crater on the sloping ejecta blanket of Santa Maria. The hills of Endeavour crater (Opportunities long term goal) are on the horizon.
Full Resolution (2244 x 673) ( 334kB )
This is only a draft version as there are still a few data dropouts and it is just the output from my automated system before doing any fine tuning or touchups that I'll do to the final version. However the view is so spectacular I couldn't sit on this any longer waiting for the last bits.
EDIT: An improved version can now be found here
Full Resolution (14608 x 2944) ( 7MB )
Half Resolution (7304 x 1472) ( 2MB )
Quarter Resolution (3652 x 736) ( 606kB )
Eighth Resolution (1826 x 368) ( 159kB )
While we wait for the full colour pancam images to be downlinked from the rover, crude colour can be derived from the small 64x64 thumbnail images that are sent down first (so that the rover team can check that they we taken properly). In this image I have overlaid this colour information onto a greyscale navcam image taken at the same spot. Quite a view!
Full Resolution (3452 x 828) ( 740kB )
Half Resolution (1726 x 414) ( 201kB )
Hecla crater, another small hole that Oppy drove past recently on her way to Santa Maria which is now only a little over 1km away.
Full Resolution (2959 x 1084) ( 1MB )
Half Resolution (1479 x 542) ( 373kB )
A view of the hills of Endeavour Crater getting ever closer on the horizon. On the left are the 'Twin Peaks'
on the north rim of Endeavour (there are many more than the two peaks that we could see for a long time now!). In the middle is the large hills of the far side of the crater and on the right are parts of the near rim near to where Oppy is headed, the actual 'landfall' point is still out of sight just to the left of these peaks.
Full Resolution (4220 x 296) ( 356kB )
Here is Intrepid Crater from the other side. The tracks that Oppy made as she approached the crater can be seen on the far side of the crater (left). This mosaic was taken as she drove away to the east, heading for Santa Maria and Endeavour beyond.
Full Resolution (4624 x 1168) ( 1018kB )
Half Resolution (2312 x 584) ( 314kB )
Intrepid Crater with the hills of Endeavour ever closer in the background.
Full Resolution (7176 x 1160) ( 1MB )
Half Resolution (3588 x 580) ( 599kB )
Opportunity has just left the ripple and large bedrock regions for a much flatter area dubbed the 'Parking Lot'.
However between here and Santa Maria crater 2km or so away the terrain is not totally featureless, there are regions of small ripples, small craters, Anatolia like troughs and further regions of exposed bedrock.
The map below shows this terrain at the full HiRISE resolution (25cm per pixel). Opportunities position (on sol 2405) is shown in yellow at the top left, Santa Maria Crater is at the bottom right. The colours represent the ripple sizes using my Fourier mapping technique that I'm posted a lot about on this blog. Green is essentially totally flat, small ripples are shades of blue as are exposed bedrock (lighter tone regions). Reds represent large ripples, however as those days are behind Oppy most of the red areas in this map are the edges of craters and the borders with the lighter toned bedrock.
Full Resolution (7928 x 2216) ( 2MB )
Half Resolution (3964 x 1108) ( 1MB )
Quarter Resolution (1982 x 554) ( 312kB )
Tosol is (almost unbelievably) sol 2400 for Opportunity, so time for an update to my large scale route map.
Oppy has made great progress over the last 100 sols with a greater distance covered in the last 100 sols than in any other! She has covered almost exactly half the distance to Santa Maria Crater since sol 2300.
Also, as can be seen in the colour plot (where the colours indicate the ripple sizes) Oppy is now very close, less than 500m from the very flat 'parking lot' terrain (shown by the green colour). I doubt she'll move much faster once she gets there but it'll be a significant milestone in the long journey to Endeavour.
Here is the drive direction mosaic for sol 2379. It makes a change not to have the hills of Endeavour on the horizon for a change! (They start just off the right edge)
Full Resolution (3736 x 1220) ( 1MB )
Half Resolution (1868 x 610) ( 361kB )