This Crater In The Middle Of A Desert Has Been Burning For Nearly 50 Years

It makes for a stunning, if spooky, sight

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The Darvaza Gas Crater in Turkmenistan has been ominously dubbed the Door to Hell by locals. A flaming pit in the middle of a vast desert, it has been burning for over 40 years. A video by Insh gives us a stunning glimpse at this geological anomaly located in Karakum Desert.

According to SBS Science, nobody knows precisely when this crater came into existence. A group of Soviet geologists came across it in 1971. Believing it to be rich in oil, they began to drill. However, crater collapsed and began emitting noxious gases.

In order to contain the gases and minimise their effects, the geologists set the crater ablaze, unwittingly creating a burning pit. They believed that the crater would burn out in a few weeks. Instead, it has been on flames for the last four decades and shows no signs of stopping.

However, an alternate version of its discovery, detailed in the National Geographic, says that the crater has existed for decades and that its collapse happened in the 1960s. local Turkmen geologists believe it "went unlit" and was set ablaze in the '80s.

According to The Sun, the Darvaza Crater is 98 feet deep and measures 226 feet across its diameter. Full of leaping flames, fire and boiling mud, it makes for a stunning, if spooky, sight.

Watch the video above to find out more about the Darvaza Crater.

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