This crater in the North was caused by the impact of an atomic bomb.
A cursed place; machines usually steer clear of it. It is sometimes referred to as the "Kessel". Sometimes, scavengers enter it to look for long forgotten artifacts or wrecks, but generally it is devoid of any machine life and civilization. To this day, the area is highly contaminated by radiation to the point of being harmful even to vehicles. During the climax of the war of the vehicles, several atomic bombs were launched by the opposing sides. One of them hit North Germany, completely eradicating the headquarters of its armies and leaving a giant crater. While everything caught in the actual explosion was completely wiped out, the blast and EMP wave also killed and disabled vehicles in a large area surrounding it. Even outposts several kilometers away were affected.
GeographyTravelling west from the Festungsfront Oder, it takes about one and a half days of marching to reach this location. From the ground, it's not easy to spot from a distance, due to the abundant fauna surrounding the place. Once one stands at the edge of the crater, however, they'll know they've found it. The crater has a diameter of almost 2 kilometers and a depth of about 80 meters. Ruins of what used to be towns and fortifications surround it. At the bottom of the crater, a lake has formed, filling about a fourth of its depth. Down there, no sign is left of the former structures.
NatureAfter the many decades since the impact, the plant and animal life has mostly recovered. Prolonged exposure to the radiation has made the flora and fauna resilient. No difference is noticable compared to the crater's surrounding area - if someone doesn't know what happened here, they would not suspect it to be a dangerous place.
While it is commonly understood what caused this crater, the average machine fails to grasp what an atomic bomb really is and how powerful the one that hit the ground here really was. Scholars have struggled to make calculations what amount of explosive material would be necessary to mimic the effect - nothing they know nowadays stands comparison to the destructive power of the bombs. Other Craters
The Cauldron is not the only impact site, but the biggest known one in the North. One of its "sisters" can be found in the Mainland, but farther north than the clan territories reach. The other is located in the East. It is unknown if there are more comparably large ones. In any case, all of them are avoided as well, although cultural perception of them varies.