If you fell down a crater or hole on the moon, is there a way to exploit microgravity/low gravity to get to the top? Lets say your survived a fall into Aristarchus crater on the moon with a slow slide down the side of 1.8 miles down (3000 meters). That is too high to jump back up, assuming you can jump roughly 10 meters on the moon.

Is there another way to exploit the low gravity on the moon to get back to the top of the crater rim?

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    $\begingroup$ Walk and climb. $\endgroup$
    – JohnHoltz
    Commented Apr 23, 2020 at 23:19
  • $\begingroup$ What is the slope of the crater wall? $\endgroup$ Commented Apr 23, 2020 at 23:41
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    $\begingroup$ Ignoring the whole spacesuit gloves and heavy equipment thing, rock climbing should be easy for most people even with sheer vertical walls. It is rare to have unclimbable rock cliffs on Earth, and the moon has 6 times less gravity. $\endgroup$ Commented Apr 24, 2020 at 0:28
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    $\begingroup$ @OrganicMarble let's find out! What is the slope of the sides of Aristarchus crater on the Moon? $\endgroup$
    – uhoh
    Commented Apr 24, 2020 at 0:36
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    $\begingroup$ Of course, what matters for the linked question is not the average slope, but to minimise the maximum slope of all possible paths from the centre to the rim. From a cursory look at the map in the answer to the linked question, it looks like there may be a route that stays mostly in the green area, so walking with some scrambling should probably work. $\endgroup$
    – gerrit
    Commented Apr 24, 2020 at 9:02

2 Answers 2


Using the data supplied in the answer to the question What is the slope of the sides of Aristarchus crater on the Moon? there are significant regions where the angle of the crater wall varies from 40° to 53.6°.

It would be difficult to walk straight up the wall, radially from the bottom to the top. It may be possible to walk along the slope of the wall, where the gradient is gentler. It would be a longer walk, but more easier to traverse. One such route is indicated by the free drawn red line on the picture below.

As to using low gravity to assist with getting out of the crater, it may be easier to traverse steeper sections of the slope because it would be easier to lift one's legs against gravity, but this would be negated somewhat by the restriction of movement imposed by the spacesuit.

enter image description here


Climbing in moon gravity is not so easy. The mass of a suit used on the moon was about 180 pounds, the astronaut weight another 180 lb on Earth.

So the weight of a suited astronaut was (180 + 180) / 6 = 60 pounds on the moon. Wearing a very stiff suit with boots not designed for climbing and pressurized gloves climbing would have been very hard.


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