This is the second largest meteorite crater on Earth with a diameter of 850 - 950 metres. The ridge of the crater stands about 35 metres above the surrounding flat sand plain. The outer edges slope at a gradual 15 degrees, but the much steeper inner walls fall away at about a 50 degree angle.
The crater is known as Janyil in Jaru and as Karntimarlarl in Walmajarri. Traditional Owners believe this circular crater was formed when a giant mythological snake raised its head from the ground back long ago at the time of creation. Aboriginal people understand many natural features, such as rivers and creeks, are the tracks left by giant ancestral snakes that once weaved their way across the desert. Scientists believe Wolfe Creek was formed by the impact of a meteorite about 2 million years ago.
Geologists F Reeves and D Hart were the first non-Aboriginal people to come across this striking natural feature while conducting an aerial survey of the Canning Basin in 1947. In 1969 Wolf Creek Crater was gazetted as a C class reserve. In 1976 protection of the area was upgraded to the status of Class A Reserve.
The Crater is located 152 km south of Halls Creek along the Tanami Road in flat and arid country. It is accessed by road along the Tanami Road via an unsealed corrugated road through Carranya Station. Scenic flights over the crater can be booked in Halls Creek.
Access: Wolfe Creek Meteorite Crater National Park is situated approximately 152km by road south of Halls Creek along the Tanami Road. When travelling to Wolfe Creek be prepared for unsealed roads. It is always recommended to travel in a 4WD vehicle due to the corrugations. Contact Halls Creek Travel & Tourism for up to date road conditions before travelling.
Facilities: There is a DPaW campsite with basic toilets, however you need to be totally self-sufficient for all your supplies. Please note there is no water available.
For further information on attractions accessible from Halls Creek view the Halls Creek Tourism and Travel Guide.
Image credit: Shire of Halls Creek.