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The Final Manned Trip To the Moon Started Today – 40 Years Ago!

Apollo 17
Harrison Schmitt at the LEM on Apollo 17 – December 1972. (Apollo 17/NASA)
Yes, it was 40 years ago that a Saturn 5 rocket lifted Apollo 17 into orbit from Florida in the final visit to the moon by a human for 40 years.

The mission sent the craft to a rocky area of the moon and on board was the only professional geologist ever to visit that unexplored landscape – Harrison Schmitt.

They landed on Earth’s satellite at 12:55 p.m. MST on December 11. During three EVAs, Schmitt and Eugene Cernan drove the lunar rover all over the place – picking up rocks and making core samples and taking photos of that stark, dusty land.

Three days later, they blasted off from the surface – captured in a remarkable video from a remote control camera on the rover. And, on December 19, they splashed down.

They took hours of video while exploring the Moon in the rover. I’ve seen most of the footage and it gives you a good indication of the steep hills and valleys there.

And, we haven’t been back. Y’know, it’s still waiting for another visit. (Richard Branson, are ya ready?)

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