Why can't you see the far side of the Moon?
From Earth, you can only see one side of the Moon. A long time ago the Earth's gravity slowed the Moon's spin. The Moon now rotates once as it orbits the Earth, so that the same side (the same half of a sphere) always faces the Earth. So we on Earth see the near side, and the far side always faces away from us.
Many people thought that there might be strange mysteries on the far side of the Moon (aliens maybe?). In 1959, Russia's Luna 3 reached the Moon. It returned the first picture of the far side of the Moon. Then in 1968 on Christmas eve, three men, Borman, Lovell, and Anders saw the far side of the moon with their own eyes as their Apollo 8 spacecraft orbited the Moon.
Anders described the far side as being the color of dirty beach sand. He also saw a land that was full of craters, but no aliens!
Submitted by Matthew (Georgia, USA)
(October 1, 1997)
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