A makhtesh (plural: makhteshim) is a geological landform considered unique to the Negev desert of Israel and the Sinai Peninsula. Although commonly known as "craters" (a literal reading of the Hebrew, and due to the visual similarity), these formations are more accurately described as erosion cirques (steephead valleys or box canyons). A makhtesh has steep walls of resistant rock surrounding a deep closed valley which is usually drained by a single wadi. The valleys have limited vegetation and soil, containing a variety of different colored rocks and a diverse fauna and flora which has been protected and preserved over millions of years.
The name Ramon comes from the Arabic "Ruman" meaning Romans. Makhtesh Ramon is a geologists’ paradise with fossils, rock formations and volcanic and magmatic phenomenon dating back as much as 220 million years. The Ramon crater began forming when the ocean that covered the desert began to move north. Water and other climatic forces slowly began to flatten the curve on top. Much later, the Arava rift valley was formed and the rivers began to change their flow. As this occurred, it carved out the crater. Some rocks at the bottom of the crater can be dated back 220 million years. Also, vertical dikes of magma which squeezed upward through fissures can be seen at various spots through the makhtesh. The lowest spot in the crater, Ein Saharonim, contains its only natural water source. From the visitor’s center it is possible to get a spectacular panoramic view of the crater.
authorities: wikipedia.org, jewishvirtuallibrary.org
1. Go to the coordinates, there you will find an information board. Behind it in the distance you can see a hill in the makhtesh. What colour is it? Why?
2. Which other colours of stones you can see here too?
3. Please take a photo of yourself or your GPS in this area (voluntary).
In order to log this Earth Cache, simply send us the answers. You do not have to wait until we reply. Simply log. In case the answers are wrong, we will contact you. If we do not, log permission is granted!