Aerial view toward north of Ukinrek Maars, Alaska; Lake Becharof at top of photo. Water partially fills the eastern maar and completely covers a lava dome that was erupted in the 100-m deep crater during a 10-day eruption in 1977. Maar is about 300 m in diameter. Credit: C. Nye / Alaska Division of Geological and Geophysical Surveys.

A maar is a low-relief, broad volcanic crater formed by shallow explosive eruptions. The explosions are usually caused by the heating and boiling of groundwater when magma invades the groundwater table. Maars often fill with water to form a lake.