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Before the Niagara river plunges along the Canada–United States border to create the mesmerizing Niagara Falls, it cuts a 11 km long gorge through the hard dolomite rocks of the Niagara Escarpment. This gorge has been a popular scene for sightseers ever since Niagara welcomed its first tourists more than a hundred years ago. Back then, the gorge was home to another attraction—a narrow-gauge railr Read More »
For over four years, photographer Romain Jacquet-Lagrèze has been training his lens on the rooftops of Hong Kong’s skyscrapers, in particular those aging buildings located in the very center of the city. These are the only buildings, unlike modern skyscrapers, where the rooftop is left unlocked and accessible by all inhabitants. Given the scarcity of space in a city of 7 million, these communal Read More »
Approximately 224 km north of Sydney, just off the New England Highway, in New South Wales, Australia, is a hill that has been burning for the last 6,000 years. The fire burns underground, at a depth of about 30 meters, fueled by a coal seam that runs through the sandstone. The aborigines called the mountain Wingen, which means 'fire', and used its heat for warmth in the winter months, fo Read More »
In northwestern Iran, near the villages of Hamzehli, Mehrabad and Chehrabad, in Zanjan province, is a large salt dome protruding into the surrounding rocky terrain. This salt dome, consisting of saliniferous rocks, in particular gypsum, clay and rock salt, were deposited in the Miocene period some 5 to 23 million years ago. Tectonic activity and the lack of overlying ground had brought the salt v Read More »
Just to the west of Naples, in Italy, is an area riddled with craters and cones. Jets of steam and sulfurous gases vent continuously from fissures and fumaroles, while the ground itself heaves, indicating that somewhere below is a supervolcano that’s growing increasingly restless. The Phlegraean Fields, known as Campi Flegrei in Italian, first erupted some 39,000 years ago, and when it did, it w Read More »
Photo credit: itravelNZ/Flickr Near Porangahau in southern Hawke's Bay, New Zealand, stands an insubstantial hill with a very substantial name. The hill is known as “Taumata whakatangi hangakoauau o tamatea turi pukakapiki maunga horo nuku pokai whenua kitanatahu”, which translates approximately to “the summit where Tamatea, the man with the big knees, who slid, climbed and swallowed mountai Read More »
The Japan Federation of Landscape Contractors organizes an annual landscaping contest, where landscaping contractors from around Japan arrive on site with their mini pickup trucks and then spending several hours transforming the cargo bed into a small garden. The contest is called “the Kei Truck Garden Contest.” The Kei Truck, or kei-tora, is a mini truck of Japanese origin but is now used widely Read More »
The asbestos mine in Asbestos, Quebec, Canada. Photo credit: Denis-Carl Robidoux/Flickr At the heart of the triangle made by the three Canadian cities of Quebec, Montreal, and Sherbrooke, lies a town with the worst name imaginable—Asbestos. So ugly is the word, that local businesses with “Asbestos” painted on their vehicles are denied entry into the United States. Custom agents recoil with horro Read More »
Deep in the Nigerian rainforest, there was once an immense kingdom surrounded by a huge earthen wall and moat. Built during the Middle Ages, this great African kingdom was larger than many contemporary kingdoms of its time such as Baghdad or Cairo or Rome. Yet, nothing of this vast kingdom survive today save for its fortification wall—a structure so enormous that its construction was a feat that Read More »
The Peekskill meteorite car sitting at a collector’s garage in Peekskill. Photo credit: Ryan Thompson/Flickr On October 9, 1992, a brilliant fireball flashed across the evening sky over eastern United States startling thousands of spectators attending the weekly high school football matches being played across the East Coast. The fireball, that witnesses described as being brighter than the fu Read More »
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