Lonar Lake- A child of celestial bodies

Lonar Crater Lake, Buldhana district of Maharashtra, Aurangabad, Deccan Plateau, volcanic, meteorite, meteorite impact, Daitya Sudan temple, Khajurao temples

Have you ever heard about the place in India where one mile wide impact crater is in existance, which is created when a meteorite had fallen on the earth? (crater is a land-form caused by two celestial bodies impacting each other).

It is the Lonar Crater Lake situated near a smaller town called Lonar in Buldhana district of Maharashtra. The place is around 145 KM away from Aurangabad.

Earlier it was believed that, having situated in Deccan Plateau, Lonar Crater is a volcanic land form came in to existance 65 million years ago. Later it was found to be a resultant land formation came in to existance between 35000 and 50,000 years ago, when 2 million-ton meteorite impacted the earth to create a depression of 1.83 kilometers in diameter and 150 meters deep.

When it struck the earth the energy released was equivalent to that released by six-megaton atom bombs. The impact was so severe that rocks from all sides came on the surface and reached the height of 20 meters. It is the world's third largest crater cum natural salt water lake. The lake contains water of alkaline nature with ph value of 10.7.

Lonar Crater contains deposits of a kind of naturally occurring glass which is known as Maskelynite.  Wider Geological surveys say these kind of glass is only formed by extremely high-velocity impacts.

The lake is beautiful and its first look will surely take your breath away. It is best enjoyed before sunset. One could go down upto water level and experience the water.

Daitya Sudan temple, Khajurao temples, Malkapur, Bhusawal railway-junction, Mumbai - Bhusawal - Nagpur routeThere is also a temple of Kamalja Devi at the edge of lake. The lake is surrounded by forests with a large variety of birds like peacocks, owls, red-wattled lapwings, ducks etc.

The other tourist attraction in Lonar is the Daitya Sudan temple. It is carved in a style similar to Khajurao temples. It has an idol that is composed of a stone-like ore with a high metal content.

The nearest train station is Malkapur near Bhusawal railway-junction, on the Mumbai – Bhusawal – Nagpur route of Central Railway of Indian Rail and is around 100 km from Lonar.

Buses also run to Lonar from Malkapur and Jalna. If travelling from Mumbai or Pune, the most convenient route is to first reach Aurangabad via bus (Mumbai and Pune) or train/flight (from Mumbai only) and then take a state transport bus to Lonar. From Pune, air-conditioned and regular buses run every hour from the Shivajinagar bus stand.

Google Map:

Have a look at this video on Lonar Lake

Courtesy: Universe of Amateur Astronomers

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