This HiRISE observation was performed in conjunction with a CRISM observation so that they could get good spectral data on the scour zone created by the MSL descent rockets.
The pair of bright white spots in this image shows the area immediately below where sky crane’s rockets were pointed. Those areas were “blasted clean” and therefore are bright. The larger dark scour zone resulted from fine dust blown away from the area, exposing a darker substrate.
This is the first time that HiRISE has imaged Curiosity’s rover tracks in color.
Note: the above image is non map-projected, so approximate north is down.
Written by: Ross A. Beyer (audio by Tre Gibbs) (30 January 2013)
More info and image formats at http://hirise.lpl.arizona.edu/ESP_030313_1755
Image: NASA/JPL/University of Arizona