Author Weird Geographical Information  (Read 2729 times)

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Re: Weird Geographical Information
« Reply #30 on: April 06, 2017, 08:03:59 PM »
Lying between Egypt and Sudan there is an 800 square mile section of land that is plagued by a case of the 'uns' - as in uninhabited, unclaimed, unwanted and
basically unusable.  It is called Bir Tawil and might be the largest stretch of unclaimed land on earth outside of Antarctica.

In 1899 the boundary between Egypt and Sudan was set at the 22nd parallel.  In 1902 the Brits setup an administrative boundary between the two states
to better reflect the use of the land by the tribesmen living there. The Ababda tribesmen used the Bir Tawil area for grazing so it was placed under Egypt's control.
Likewise the  Halaib area  to the northeast was placed under Sudanese control as its inhabitants were culturally closer to Khartoum.   

Today both countries claim the Halaib Triangle but in 2000 the Sudanese military left the area, which effectively ceded control to Egypt.  The area has some settlements
and access to the Red Sea and is desirable.   

No one wants Bir Tawil, although occasionally  someone will travel there and hoist a flag up temporarily but will soon leave due to the harsh climate.  It remains
an anomaly as Egypt claims the 1899 border is viable and Sudan goes with the 1902 border.





The guy in the pictures is Jeremiah Heaton. He made an attempt to setup a kingdom so his daughter could be a princess. 
 

Re: Weird Geographical Information
« Reply #31 on: April 06, 2017, 09:08:26 PM »
Penon de Velez de la Gomera is a 1.9-hectare (4.7 acre) rock fortress garrisoned by Spain off the coast of Morocco. It was an island until 1934, when a powerful storm piled up sand between it and the mainland, creating a narrow isthmus and turning the island into a peninsula connected to Morocco. This narrow neck of land gave rise to the world’s shortest international border. It measures just 85 meters (279 ft) long and separates Penon de Velez de la Gomera from Morocco.


Re: Weird Geographical Information
« Reply #32 on: April 06, 2017, 09:14:04 PM »
Good one Zeebo.   Welcome aboard!


Re: Weird Geographical Information
« Reply #33 on: April 06, 2017, 09:59:06 PM »
Lake Karachay (Карача́й) is/was a small lake in the southern Ural Mountains of Russia, and has been claimed to be the most polluted place on earth.



Starting in 1951, it was used as a dumping site for radioactive waste from the Mayak facility (sort of the Soviet Hanford Site). It was further contaminated during the Kyshtym disaster in 1957, which is ranked as the third worst nuclear accident to date on the International Nuclear Event Scale.



During a drought in the 1960s, wind carried dust from the bottom of the lake and irradiated half a million people, following which concrete blocks were placed onto the lake bed to prevent sediment from shifting. Nearby residents and plant workers who were contaminated by the disasters and release of radiation into their drinking water suffered from radiation related illnesses, which doctors weren't allowed to acknowledge as such due to the secrecy of the nuclear plant (only publicly acknowledged in the 1990s).
The sediment of the lake bed is believed to be composed almost entirely of high level radioactive waste deposits to a depth of roughly 11ft, and in 1990 some parts of the lake were estimated to have a radiation level high enough to give a lethal dose in 30min to 1hr.



Recent satellite images suggest that the lake has been completely filled in.

Re: Weird Geographical Information
« Reply #34 on: April 07, 2017, 09:45:11 PM »
Most folks know that the Vatican City State is a micro-nation located within the borders of Italy.  What some may not realize that it is not alone
in this regard.   There is also the nation of San Marino which is located up on the calf area of the Italian Boot. 

It is the sole survivor of the Italian City-State system and is the world's oldest surviving sovereign state.  It was formed on September 3rd, 301
by Saint Marinus.  Fleeing persecution and from what I gather an insane woman who insisted he was her husband, Marinus set up a monastery on
Monte Titano. This would grow to become the nation of San Marino.   At 24 square miles with a population of 33,000 it is one of the smallest countries in
the world. 

San Marino has had some close calls during it's existence but is has managed to survive.  When Napoleon was on the march in the area one of San Marino's
regents managed to befriend Napoleon and San Marino was spared.   During the Unification of Italy, Garibaldi was convinced to leave San Marino independent.
During World War One, San Marino was officially neutral but twenty volunteers fought with the Italians.  During World War Two, San Marino was again
officially neutral but it was briefly occupied by the Germans until they were ejected after the Battle of San Marino.   It also had the world's first democratically
elected communist government which was voted into power in 1945 and held it until 1957.

San Marino maintains one of the smallest military forces in the world.  The largest component of this is the Crossbow Corps which is about 80 volunteers strong.
There is also the Guard of the Rock and the Guard of the Grand and General Council.   San Marino is not an official EU member but it is allowed to use the Euro
as its currency.  It has also had more female heads of state then any other country - 15 in all through out it's history. 

Saint Marinus


San Marino



Military




Re: Weird Geographical Information
« Reply #35 on: April 07, 2017, 10:06:09 PM »
I'm just autisming this thread for fun, but have we KhanFused cartogropey with GeoMupp'try?

Sx Axing fur fiend?



Btich, 'gain?



Not Sure...

Re: Weird Geographical Information
« Reply #36 on: April 07, 2017, 10:11:27 PM »
A valid point Pate.   Cartography probably should have been mentioned in the thread name. 

Too late now.

Re: Weird Geographical Information
« Reply #37 on: April 07, 2017, 10:19:52 PM »


Recorded somewhere stateside (NON_OCONUS):  fascinating

Huh>?

ediot:  Door!

Re: Weird Geographical Information
« Reply #38 on: April 08, 2017, 12:03:07 PM »
Mount Yamantau is a 5381ft mountain in the southern Urals and Kosvinsky Kamen is a 4984ft high massif located 600km to the north.



The name of Yamantau means 'wicked/evil mountain' in the local Bashkir language. Large excavation projects were observed during the 1990s in satellite images and it is believed that either a secret weapons facility, a bunker, or some combination of the two has been constructed there. Large railway lines run to the mountain, and closed military towns were built to house workers and soldiers. The Russian government has never given a straight answer as to what exactly has been built there, with answers including a mining site, a repository for Russian treasures, a food storage area, and a bunker for leaders in case of nuclear war.





Kosvinsky Kamen is believed to be a deep underground continuity of government bunker, and its completion in the late 90s is regarded as a possible explanation for US interest in and deployment of new bunker busters.


Re: Weird Geographical Information
« Reply #39 on: April 09, 2017, 02:04:31 AM »
The Atacama Desert in Chile, not the Sahara, is the driest desert on earth.  Average rainfall is less than a half an in. per year.  Some areas have not received rain in 500 years.  It's in the 'rainshadow' west of the Andes - trade winds from the east drench the S. American rain forests before hitting the mountains' east side.



Makes for a good place for telescopes though.  High elevation, near zero humidity, clear skies.



Occasionally though, in years where more rainfall is received, usually due to an El Nino effect, the desert comes briefly alive with blooming wildflowers.



The direst place of all on earth however, as measured by precipitation, is actually in the McMurdo Dry Valleys of Antarctica which apparently have received no rainfall at all in a million years.  Something about the surrounding mountains which keep sea ice away, and the wind patterns which squeeze any moisture out of descending air before it ever reaches these valleys.


Re: Weird Geographical Information
« Reply #40 on: April 09, 2017, 10:13:33 PM »
The case of the dual Sault Ste. Marie's is up next.

Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario and Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan are two different cities, in two different countries, with the same name and are separated by
the Saint Mary's river.  The name of the cities is pronounced as "Soo Saint Marie" or "The Soo" for short.  Why would two cities across a river from each other
have the same name?   The answer lies in history.

Originally they were just a single French settlement and the French name persists to this day like it does in so many places in that part of North America.
Sault-Sainte-Marie means 'Rapids of Saint Mary' and it is the Saint Mary's river that connects Lake Superior to Lake Huron. They are the oldest European
settlements in the Midwest - being founded by Father Marquette in 1668.   After the War of 1812 the  British-US Boundary Commission set the boundary
at the Saint Mary's river and the towns eventually incorporated themselves independently using the same names. 

Sault Ste. Marie,  Ontario is fairly large with 75,000 residents and has produced some wonderful NHL players - including Ron Francis and the Esposito brothers.
Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan is the second most populous city in the Upper Peninsula but is much smaller than it's sister city across the river with only 14,000
residents.  The cities are linked by the International Bridge which spans the Saint Marys.

Soo Michigan is the northern end of I-75 and is home to the Soo Locks.  The Locks allow shipping traffic to flow between Lake Superior and Lake Huron. 
The Locks are run by the Army Corps of Engineers and were last expanded in World War Two in order to facilitate the flow of Iron Ore to the steel mills
to the south.   An aside note - if you ever happen to be in Sault Ste. Marie Mich, grab lunch at the Lockview.   Get the fresh Superior Whitefish and Perch
- it's pretty awesome.   There is also a Ship Museum that contains the lifeboats from the ill fated S.S. Edmund Fitzgerald that went down in Lake Superior in 1975 and
of course is the subject of Gordon Lightfoot's song Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald

Father Marquette


Soo Locks



Edmund Fitzgerald and torn up lifeboat


Whitefish Basket

 

Re: Weird Geographical Information
« Reply #41 on: April 09, 2017, 10:23:08 PM »
Below is a URL that contains a link to the Soo Locks Webcam.  It can be interesting to watch on occasion.

Caution however: the Army's Website was throwing some sort of Certificate error so click at your own risk

https://webcam.erdc.dren.mil/soo/

Re: Weird Geographical Information
« Reply #42 on: April 10, 2017, 12:55:31 AM »
Whitefish Basket

That just looks like fish and chips.

---------------------------------------

Banjawarn Station is a remote cattle station located 500 miles northeast of Perth and 220 miles north of Kalgoorlie in the area of Leonora, covering an area of 999,986 acres.
In 1993 the station was bought by the doomsday cult Aum Shinrikyo (responsible for the Tokyo sarin attacks), and witnesses reported seeing members of the group dressed in full hazmat suits there. Following the attacks in 1995 the Australian Federal Police raided the station finding computers, laboratory equipment, and byproducts of sarin in the soil.



In late May 1993, a seismic disturbance was detected in the area of Banjawarn station. The few witnesses to the event (this is in an extremely remote desert area) reported seeing a fireball in the sky and a lingering low frequency hum. Due to the lack of physical evidence of the event such as a meteor crater and the known interest of Aum Shinrikyo in acquiring nuclear weapons, there has been speculation that a nuclear device may have been detonated.



As an aside, Leonora is somewhat famous for having a connection to Herbert Hoover. In 1897 he was sent to the area to develop and manage the Sons of Gwalia mine. The house he lived in during his brief time in the area still exists today.



Re: Weird Geographical Information
« Reply #43 on: April 10, 2017, 11:24:23 AM »
As an aside, Leonora is somewhat famous for having a connection to Herbert Hoover.
I flew as a baby with Herbert Hoover.

Re: Weird Geographical Information
« Reply #44 on: April 10, 2017, 01:36:21 PM »
Bristol, Tennessee is closer to Canada than it is to Memphis.

Re: Weird Geographical Information
« Reply #45 on: April 10, 2017, 07:15:32 PM »
Check out "The Congo Pedicle".  It means "little foot", and almost cleaves neighboring Zambia in half.  It is the result of historical Belgian attempts to reach Lake Bangweulu and surrounding wetlands that were rich in fish and game.   

There does exist a Pedicle Road, which cuts through Congo territory to connect the two halves of Zambia.  But with the eruption of civil war in Congo in the '90s, Zambians had no choice but to construct a series of elevated causeways over surrounding wetlands, allowing them to navigate around this rather inconvenient Congolese protrusion.


Re: Weird Geographical Information
« Reply #46 on: April 10, 2017, 08:04:33 PM »
The least populated county in the United States is Loving County, Texas with 82 residents in the 2010 Census. The population density is 0.1/sq mi.








This article is 20 years old but is an interesting read that describes the politics
of living in such a small community where various families vie for paychecks as elected county officials.




Re: Weird Geographical Information
« Reply #47 on: April 10, 2017, 10:20:56 PM »
Check out "The Congo Pedicle".  It means "little foot", and almost cleaves neighboring Zambia in half.  It is the result of historical Belgian attempts to reach Lake Bangweulu and surrounding wetlands that were rich in fish and game.   

There does exist a Pedicle Road, which cuts through Congo territory to connect the two halves of Zambia.  But with the eruption of civil war in Congo in the '90s, Zambians had no choice but to construct a series of elevated causeways over surrounding wetlands, allowing them to navigate around this rather inconvenient Congolese protrusion.

Zambia is a bit of an oddity in Africa. Fairly stable and prosperous, and they even had a white president for a while in 2014/2015.

If you want a good read of someone crossing the Congo in a 4wd there's this:
http://forum.expeditionportal.com/threads/50799-Democratic-Republic-of-Congo-Lubumbashi-to-Kinshasa

Re: Weird Geographical Information
« Reply #48 on: April 10, 2017, 10:31:58 PM »
Zambia is a bit of an oddity in Africa. Fairly stable and prosperous, and they even had a white president for a while in 2014/2015.

If you want a good read of someone crossing the Congo in a 4wd there's this:
http://forum.expeditionportal.com/threads/50799-Democratic-Republic-of-Congo-Lubumbashi-to-Kinshasa

>you will never go 4x4ing across the African Congo in a 70 series Toyota Land Cruiser

Why even live?



Re: Weird Geographical Information
« Reply #49 on: April 10, 2017, 10:33:02 PM »
Zambia is a bit of an oddity in Africa. Fairly stable and prosperous, and they even had a white president for a while in 2014/2015.

If you want a good read of someone crossing the Congo in a 4wd there's this:
http://forum.expeditionportal.com/threads/50799-Democratic-Republic-of-Congo-Lubumbashi-to-Kinshasa
When Belgium "left" the Congo there was a working telephone system (landline) and postal service to much of the country (especially the more populated areas) and there was many thousands of miles of maintained roads. As of the Fiftieth anniversary of independence it had neither. I saw a recent book about crossing the Congo recently reviewed in the WSJ and they mentioned that there is only a thousand or so (I forget, maybe as high as 3,000) miles of maintained roads and most of this was new and done by mining companies. Also, interestingly, the authors mentioned that the "only danger they felt" was when natives thought they might be "environmentalists" (who, in their minds at least) would try to stop the only viable source of income for themselves (mines, poaching, etc.) A basket-case of a country. Like so many others there. And it would seem South African leadership is determined to try to drive themselves into a Zimbabwe, Congo, etc situation. They are talking about taking more lands.
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2017/03/03/jacob-zuma-calls-confiscation-white-land-without-compensation/

Re: Weird Geographical Information
« Reply #50 on: April 10, 2017, 10:39:03 PM »
The least populated county in the United States is Loving County, Texas with 82 residents in the 2010 Census. The population density is 0.1/sq mi.








This article is 20 years old but is an interesting read that describes the politics
of living in such a small community where various families vie for paychecks as elected county officials.
I was strongly tempted to take a detour but was trying to make time but recently made a drive across Texas and then the American southwest deserts. Really, actually some beautiful, but desolate, places. But the sky is large at night (and day) and you can drive fast and no traffic! I swear I crossed some states quicker than I could cross LA later. But also, even today, you have to watch your mileage. Sometimes long time between stations. I coasted in on fumes for miles once when I wasn't paying attention and was sweating it out. When I removed the gas cap the tank let out a LOUD hiss! Ha! But this year also due to some rains some nice flowers and the cacti in Arizona are, actually, like "Road Runner" cartoons. I was constantly on alert for an ACME branded weapon. Good times and I highly suggest it. Also Big Bend area (and Palo Duro canyon) are parks not often visited, so open skies, no traffic, total views, often no cellphone coverage or radio reception, and harsh conditions- so beware and prepare. I didn't visit this time, but if one gets a chance, do so. Especially Big Bend.

Re: Weird Geographical Information
« Reply #51 on: April 10, 2017, 10:41:48 PM »
To bad the 40 series didn't have an engine it would have made this adventure even more arousing 

***Maximum Ahegao***

Re: Weird Geographical Information
« Reply #52 on: April 10, 2017, 10:45:15 PM »
To bad the 40 series didn't have an engine it would have made this adventure even more arousing 

***Maximum Ahegao***

I've always found it somewhat disconcerting to have the fuel tank under my seat. Then again, maybe it was a Toyota prototype of a ejector seat, for safety in the event of a crash?

Re: Weird Geographical Information
« Reply #53 on: April 10, 2017, 10:49:35 PM »
I have never wanted to live in a third world shit hole so badly in my life. These pictures are really activating my almonds!

Quote
You cannot tell from this picture, but the iron beam underneath the iron plate was broken in two. We had to drive next to the plate. On the far side this meant we only had half a tyre on the bridge.





Re: Weird Geographical Information
« Reply #54 on: April 10, 2017, 11:00:21 PM »
I've always found it somewhat disconcerting to have the fuel tank under my seat. Then again, maybe it was a Toyota prototype of a ejector seat, for safety in the event of a crash?

I had a Willy's CJ3B and sitting on the gas tank didn't bother me it just added to the excitement!

The CJ3B's were so ugly they were almost cute

Re: Weird Geographical Information
« Reply #55 on: April 10, 2017, 11:18:03 PM »
I had a Willy's CJ3B and sitting on the gas tank didn't bother me it just added to the excitement!

The CJ3B's were so ugly they were almost cute

Ha, the Japs copying us, like always. I like the look actually of the various Willys, but love the old Power Wagons. Never had one though. BTW Topgear and some other shows have good stuff about crossing backward places like Burma, etc that are fun to watch.
ps: what I don't like is where to fuel up, I don't like many laws or international agreements or bodies but how about one that says something like:
1) cap is always on driver's side for gas
2) cap is always on passenger side for diesel
3) vehicles built before X year are exempted, of course. The behind the license plate was always a nice middle ground.
Thus, avoiding the crap of when driving different vehicles you pull in and then say "shit" wrong side- especially if you prepaid when you bought some other stuff and then got to do a 3 point turn to get into proper position. And it would avoid idiots accidently putting the wrong fuel into tanks. And it would avoid the "triggering" of poor people watching the expensive vehicles having them on the other side since, "I'm not going to pump my own gas, after all" and have the attendant do it.

Re: Weird Geographical Information
« Reply #56 on: April 11, 2017, 04:18:05 AM »
Vozrozhdeniya Island (Rebirth/Renaissance Island) was an island in the Aral Sea until it became a peninsula and indistinguishable from surrounding land in 2001 and 2008 respectively as a result of the drying of the sea. In 1948 a secret bioweapons laboratory was established on the island which tested a variety of agents, including anthrax, smallpox, and the plague. Open air and animal testing both occurred at the facility.



In 1976 there was an accidental release of weaponised smallpox from the island, which killed 3. At one time, the island's population was 1500 and had schools, social clubs, and a stadium. Warning about the dangers of the island reached the West in the 1990s and the island was abandoned and evacuated in November 1991.





There's a concern about the storage and disposal of the weapons at the site, especially with looters and scavengers, and in 2002 an American expedition neutralised between 100 and 200 tonnes of anthrax. Despite this, there is concern about contaminated dust from the site (and former seabed) blowing into inhabited areas.


Re: Weird Geographical Information
« Reply #57 on: April 11, 2017, 05:32:52 AM »
Zambia is a bit of an oddity in Africa. Fairly stable and prosperous...

When Belgium "left" the Congo there was a working telephone system (landline) and postal service to much of the country (especially the more populated areas) and there was many thousands of miles of maintained roads. As of the Fiftieth anniversary of independence it had neither. ...

There was a cool book I read awhile back called Investment Biker by Jim Rogers where he talks about traveling through these areas.  I think he actually compares Zambia & Congo (I can't remember exactly though, so might have been other countries in the region). 

Anyway he talks about how things slowly fell into disrepair after the colonials left and also muses about how these two neighboring countries share very similar natural resources, but while one is relatively prosperous the other is a ramshackle disaster - mainly just because of different economic/political systems.  It's an interesting case study (kind of like N. vs. S. Korea in a way.)

Anyway I recommend this book even though its dated  (came out maybe fifteen years ago).  He and his girlfriend motorbike around the world and his commentary tends to be from a financial/economic point of view which is pretty unique for a travelogue.

Re: Weird Geographical Information
« Reply #58 on: April 11, 2017, 06:20:24 AM »
There was a cool book I read awhile back called Investment Biker by Jim Rogers where he talks about traveling through these areas.  I think he actually compares Zambia & Congo (I can't remember exactly though, so might have been other countries in the region). 

Anyway he talks about how things slowly fell into disrepair after the colonials left and also muses about how these two neighboring countries share very similar natural resources, but while one is relatively prosperous the other is a ramshackle disaster - mainly just because of different economic/political systems.  It's an interesting case study (kind of like N. vs. S. Korea in a way.)

Anyway I recommend this book even though its dated  (came out maybe fifteen years ago).  He and his girlfriend motorbike around the world and his commentary tends to be from a financial/economic point of view which is pretty unique for a travelogue.

Looks pretty good Zeeb

https://www.amazon.com/Investment-Biker-Around-World-Rogers/dp/0812968719

Re: Weird Geographical Information
« Reply #59 on: April 11, 2017, 10:54:35 AM »
The Darvaza Gas Crater (also known as the Door to Hell or Gates of Hell) is located in the middle of the Karakum Desert and 160miles north of Ashgabat, the capital of Turkmenistan. The diameter of the crater is 226ft with a depth of 98ft.



The site was identified in 1971 by the Soviets as a possible site for an oil field, and a drilling rig and camp was set up to assess the quantity present. Following the discovery of a natural gas pocket, the ground collapsed forming the crater and swallowing the rig and camp. Concerned by the possibility of poisonous gases spreading into nearby towns, the Soviet engineers decided to ignite the gas to burn it off.



Despite estimates of the gas burning out in a few weeks, the crater is still alight decades later. In 2010, the President of Turkmenistan visited the crater and ordered that it be either curtailed or closed to allow for the development of nearby gas fields.