Be The Smartest Person In The Room, Join The Just Launched All That Is Interesting Newsletter

This Is The Last Thing You’d Expect To See Within A Sinkhole

Inside Chinese Sinkhole

Source: Song Wen/Zuma Press

Sinkholes are a relatively commonplace occurrence in China, but what emerged from one in the Hubei province is certainly not. Thanks in part to the karst formations, if you take a peek into the 317-yard-deep gash you’ll find a home to an array of flora and fauna. That’s right: the hole has given way to an ecosystem.

Head to The Wall Street Journal to learn more about the life teeming within the sinkhole.

Las Médulas: Splitting Mountains In Search Of Spanish Gold

Las Medulas Sublime Vista

Las Médulas is a place of profound beauty with a surprising past. Source: Flickr

The Romans marched into Iberia in the second century BCE. The ruins of their architectural achievements are still scattered around the country, in Segovia, Mérida, Tarragona, Zaragoza, and many other places.

Las Médulas also bears a quiet testimony to the power of the empire. The mining site is located in the northwest of Spain, near where the region of Castilla y León meets the border of Galicia. The landscape here rises and falls in low, green mountains with slashes of orange cutting across them. These orange slashes are the scars of the Roman mining operations.

Las Médulas is where the Romans searched for gold. And they found it by tearing through the mountains of this verdant corner of Spain. According to ancient estimates, the Romans removed around 20,000 libra of gold from Spain each year, which converts to about 6,600 kilograms or 14,500 pounds. At current prices, this amount of gold is worth more than $27 million.

Continue Reading

Eerie Charcoal Forest Captured by Oskar Zapirain

The world is full of incredible forests, but this foggy beech forest in Northern Spain is one of the most striking of them all.

Oskar Zapirain’s photos take us right to Oirtzun, Basque Country. In the sixteenth century, an abundance of both iron ore and forests fit for charcoal production presented families who worked the land with a vast economic opportunity. Seeing this charcoal forest as an asset, the people chose not to engage in clear-cutting–or the act of removing all trees from a given space–but pruned the trees instead.

In a process known as coppicing, young trees are cut down to allow a number of new shoots to emerge from the stump. Eventually the coppiced tree is ready to be harvested, after which point the process begins again. While this exact woodland management technique might not have shaped the charcoal forest in Oirtzun, processes like these allow more generations to extract the wood for charcoal.

The result is visible: the stumps stay relatively short, while the limbs reach upward like an outstretched hand. Combined with the region’s heavy fog, the scene becomes incredibly eerie and mysterious. According to This is Colossal, Oskar Zapirain has been photographing this Spanish landscape for years. The photographer continues to be attracted to its “mystical atmosphere” and uniform lighting. Check out more of his work at Flickr, or in the photos below:

Continue Reading

Close Pop-in
Like All That Is Interesting

Get The Most Fascinating Content On The Web In Your Facebook & Twitter Feeds