No Mean City
Curiosity's been skirting Mt. Sharp for some time now
heading in towards the area we're going to be observing.
As she's been doing so, I've been watching from above. We have keen eyes looking down on where she's going.
We've been mapping where she's been and what she's seen, and we know which direction she's intended to go.
Along the way she's seen many odd and beautiful things,
putting many in mind of the vast mountains and
canyons of the southwest complete with relics strewn about from what may have been former habitation.
On Sol 1286 Curiosity captured a panoramic image that
has captivated anyone paying enough attention to
have had the pleasure of seeing it. This is where Curiosity is wanted to go. Many have called it "Gale City"
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I have to admit, the first time I saw it I almost fell out of my seat. Is this the very thing we've been searching for all
these years? Pyramids, roads, structures and entrances, an undeniable City on a Hill like we all just knew we'd find as
we furthered our explorations on Mars! Well... maybe. but then once again, maybe not. Ever the maybe nots with this.
First off, we have to realize Curiosity is looking
uphill. We also have to take into consideration that it is also a little
over 4 miles to the closest part of that very city-looking at a distance area. At such lengths Curiosity's distance vision
tends to fail a little as the super size version below clearly shows. Great as is, the details are only hints at this distance.
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Looking mightily like a city, John Carter might think he was at home seeing this.
If you'd like to pan around and zoom into the entire
image, Neville Thompson has compiled a
most excellent Gigapan version here; http://gigapan.com/gigapans/186085
Excusing nostalgia, I know
the images bring up visions of Barsoom,
but the title might be giving some of us flashbacks of this type...
Feel the city heartbeat, feel the pulse in the
streets! Can you feel the city heartbeat, can you feel the pulse in the streets?
Can you feel your own heartbeat? Can you feel your blood begin to heat?
Turn out your legions the savior is loose, telling true stories you know there ain't no use
Now let's view what's really down there in this area when we use HiRise and look down.
First we'll see some lower res maps of the overall
location showing both rover and supposed city. It is
absolutely imperative to be able to relate the orbital view to the ground vista. Since Curiosity is looking
along Mt Sharp towards the southeast, the image top in the panoramas above is generally towards the
southeast and upslope. HiRise looks down with north at the image top, and from nearly directly above.
This being nearly opposite has created confusion in many researchers trying to correlate the views.
Huge ruined tetrahedron at hilltop on the lower right of
the image, pyramidal monoliths abound. Why I bet if you
look long enough you may even spot the huge geoglyphs, but a city like seen from below should be easily found.
The Rover track is the thin red line at image top. Try
and find some of the items seen in the panoramics, and
of course you true believers, see if you can spot the aforementioned geoglyphs. You probably already have.
Here I'm showing the approximate view from Curiosity
Though not perfect in scale, these aids help us grasp and
reconcile the two views, ground and orbital.
that said, we should now be able to locate that mass of crumbling metropolis on the hill right? Right?
While Curiosity might have a little trouble with
distance, HiRise's telescopic spy-in-the-sky eye sees it all, and
with this being the location we put a very expensive little craft, of course they took some very good images.
The only problem here is that this 'city' is not there to be found, at least not as seen from the ground.
These two source images cover the area at a resolution that can see Curiosity down there
Click image for full res version, the one displayed above is only 10% native size. This area requires hours to explore.
This is the cliff and a large portion of the so called
city area (the light material). Note the many small anomalous
monoliths arranged in the upper left. This is a most possible ruin area, but these cannot be seen from Curiosity's
grounded vantage point. In fact, as I'm looking through the HiRise images it becomes apparent that most the best
anomalous items on the mountain can't really be seen by Curiosity, and unless it can climb up there they won't be.
These are the pyramidal objects seen at the foot of the valley in the panoramic image foreground.
Some see a city in image #7, I can't say I do. That said,
there are nevertheless many noteworthy anomalies
strewn about which lead me to believe that though this might not be the crumbling metropolis we've been
diligently searching for, it may have been an artificial construct after all: A giant one. This, like many of the
other huge suspected artificial constructs on Mars and elsewhere in our solar system may be... arcologies.
This one was perhaps built to survive a massive cataclysm. Mars is stated to have went through at least 2 major
tsunami events separated by time. Surviving the first, they may have built for another. If so, we should be able to
find some symbolism and artificialities that would back this up. Civilizations capable of something like this would
probably also be able to carve whole landscapes with an artful fancy such as they did in Cydonia and elsewhere on
Mars; such as the huge megalithic and tetrahedral geoglyph Spirit rolled right over before everyone's unseeing eyes,
and items like that crazy bird shaped parrotopia mound and anomalous area that's found in Argyre. They're there.
Now by the term geoglyphs I'm meaning giant artful land carvings
made by intelligences and totally unrelated to
any pareidolial dismissives. This area has perhaps some of the most detailed and symbolic geoglyphs I've yet seen.
They are the Dragon and the Phoenix. Though surviving eons and catastrophe, we can see them clearly below
Most people can see the Phoenix quite easily while not noticing the Dragon.
What it says to me symbolically is destruction, and rebirth from the ashes.
It comes as little surprise that when when we
follow along the valley which makes up its tail feathers we
find what just might be openings or entrances into it: our city on the hill may just be one under the hill.
That's not all the openings either. Below is another
possible geoglyph, but looks to be badly damaged.
As is there's one with a large circular opening, another with interior structure revealed by a collapse
Then we have this extremely odd polygonal terrain resembling buried structure.
I invite all readers to explore this wonderful area, I've
barely scratched the surface here.
I hope this little image study has brought some clarity to the issue, and to close I'd like to
breathe a little of the breath of life onto the tired and errant subject of this 'City on a hill"
and awaken the understanding that the City is not on, but IS the hill.
"On a satellite I ride, nothing down below can hide"
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