Apollo astronaut reveals what it’s like to walk on the Moon: ‘Most beautiful terrain I’d ever seen’

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There have been billions of those that have walked the face of the Earth all through historical past, however solely 12 of have ever walked on the floor of the Moon.

For the choose few which have ever walked on Earth’s pure satellite tv for pc, one adjective will get repeated again and again — magnificent.

“I might sum it up with marvel, awe, pleasure and journey,” Apollo 16 lunar module pilot Charlie Duke stated of the sensation of strolling on the Moon whereas discussing the historic Apollo 11 mission. “You are in a spot that Buzz [Aldrin] stated was ‘magnificent desolation.’ It was essentially the most stunning terrain I might ever seen.”

Astronaut Charles Duke, Apollo 16 lunar module pilot, is photographed collecting lunar samples at Station No. 1 at the Descartes landing site.

Astronaut Charles Duke, Apollo 16 lunar module pilot, is photographed accumulating lunar samples at Station No. 1 on the Descartes touchdown web site.
(NASA)

APOLLO 11 INSIDERS REMEMBER HISTORY’S MOST FAMOUS SPACE MISSION: ‘WE HAD A JOB TO DO AND WE DID IT’

Duke, who was additionally the capsule communicator (CAPCOM) for Apollo 11, described the floor of the Moon with aplomb. “There have been shades of gray and there was such a pointy distinction between the lunar floor and the blackness of area,” Duke added. “I felt proper at house.”

Earth was simply there suspended upon nothing, within the blackness of area. It was simply superior.

— Charles Duke, Apollo 16 astronaut

Together with John Younger, the ninth particular person to stroll on the Moon, Duke stated that the 2 astronauts “by no means misplaced [their] pleasure]” within the 71 hours, 2 minutes and 13 seconds they spent on the floor. “We acknowledged all the foremost landmarks that we might studied by way of photographs. I suppose it could be like a 5-year-old at Christmas and their birthday all rolled into one. Once we began to discover, we simply had enjoyable doing it.”

Apollo 16 was the one NASA mission to focus on the “lunar highlands,” an space within the Moon’s southeast quadrant with hilly and grooved terrain, in line with the area company.

From the Moon to the Earth

Twelve males, all Individuals, have been the one individuals to set foot on the Moon, however a far better variety of astronauts, each women and men, have seen the Earth from area. Each Duke and Apollo 11 astronaut Michael Collins have described this as merely unimaginable.

“The primary time I noticed it [the Earth], we got here from the bottom of the Moon and we watched Earthrise. My first thought was, ‘We’re a good distance from house,'” Duke stated, laughing. “However after that, you acknowledge the great thing about it — the blue, the white and the brown. Earth was simply there suspended upon nothing, within the blackness of area. It was simply superior.”

Collins, who didn’t stroll on the Moon, in contrast to his fellow crew members Armstrong and Aldrin, nonetheless stated that being so near the Moon was “fantastic,” the sight of the Earth was awe-inspiring.

This view of Earth rising over the moon's horizon was taken from the Apollo spacecraft. The lunar terrain pictured is in the area of Smyth's Sea on the nearside. Coordinates of the center of the terrain are 85 degrees east longitude and 3 degrees north latitude. (Credit: NASA)

This view of Earth rising over the moon’s horizon was taken from the Apollo spacecraft. The lunar terrain pictured is within the space of Smyth’s Sea on the nearside. Coordinates of the middle of the terrain are 85 levels east longitude and three levels north latitude. (Credit score: NASA)

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“It is this tiny little factor, blue and white, with smears of rust that we name continents,” Collins informed Fox Information. “It projected an aura of nice fragility and the extra you dig into it, the extra you notice how fragile it’s.”

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Make sure you catch the America’s Information HQ Apollo 11 50th anniversary particular on Fox Information on Saturday, July 20 at 12 PM EDT.

Fox Information’ James Rogers contributed to this story.

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