ADVENTURE

The Gate of Hell, the crater of fire in the desert that has been burning for more than 40 years

In the desert of Karakum, in Turkmenistan, there is a huge gaseous crater known as the Gate of Hell, which is presumed to have been burning, without ever stopping, since 1971.

The crater was formed following the collapse of a natural gas cave and the name Gate of Hell was given to it by the local population, who live in the nearby village of Derweze. The name is associated with the fact that inside the crater, with a diameter of about 70 meters and a depth of 20, there is constantly fire, flames and boiling mud. At night, flames are visible even several kilometers away.

According to the local population, the Gate of Hell is a supernatural phenomenon. The explorer George Kourounis managed to take some soil samples inside the crater and from the analysis would have discovered the presence of bacteria that survived despite the high temperatures and present are inside the crater and not in the surrounding terrain.

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The Gate of Hell of Turkmenistan's desert
In the desert of Karakum, in Turkmenistan, there is a huge gaseous crater known as the Gate of Hell, which is presumed to have been burning, without ever stopping, since 1971.
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Why the crater is called Gate of Hell
The crater was formed following the collapse of a natural gas cave and the name Gate of Hell was given to it by the local population, who live in the nearby village of Derweze. The name is associated with the fact that inside the crater, with a diameter of about 70 meters and a depth of 20, there is constantly fire, flames and boiling mud. At night, flames are visible even several kilometers away.
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The accident that happened in 1971
In 1971, Soviet geologists placed a drilling rig in the area, not knowing that there was a natural gas field there. Under the weight of the platform, the ground gave way, causing equipment to plummet inside the cave filled with natural gas. Geologists started the fire to cause the gas inside the cave to wear out, but the flames are still alive today.
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A curiosity about the crater
According to the local population, the Gate of Hell is a supernatural phenomenon. The explorer George Kourounis managed to take some soil samples inside the crater and from the analysis would have discovered the presence of bacteria that survived despite the high temperatures and present are inside the crater and not in the surrounding terrain.
Getty Images
A tourist attraction
The Gate of Hell has obviously become, with the passing of time, a tourist attraction capable of attracting thousands of people. Among other things, it is located near what is also considered a popular camping area in the desert.
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