Strange Temple

Where does a city come from? Its stone, brick, concrete, metal - all must be carved out from within the earth. For every great city, somewhere there is a greater hole.

As the sun rose I stood before a once mighty entryway into the largest mine I had ever seen. Numerous collapses over the last century have almost obscured the portal completely. Ducking under the narrow gap among the rubble surrounding me I stand up in the largest enclosed space I have ever seen in my life.

The mine has an alien atmosphere. The air is still and strangely warm. At the end of one passageway I find the intact skeleton of a deer, its bones turned the color of stone. I cannot help but feel a chill, imagining the scared animal wandering alone in the darkness and silence, unable to find its way.

Later on I discover a strange totem pole. In the midst of a collapse a 10 ft column of stone stands perfectly upright. After an 80 ft fall from the roof this rock punched enough of a hole in the surrounding dirt to remain standing upright. High above I imagined I could see its outline in ceiling.

As I pushed further into the deepest recesses of the mine the temperature dropped and I began to notice that a permanent frost grew under many of the stones lying about. Still further back the frost took over and coated the entire floor. But the crisp sound of frost underfoot was absent. Instead I felt as though I walked on a soft cloud. Upon closer examination the frost proved to be a thick coat of fungus.

There is speculation among biologists that the largest organisms on our planet may in fact be vast underground fields of mold. Looking around at the strange white fibers reaching out from every available surface I suddenly felt dwarfed by the enormity of this strange animal that surrounded me. Perhaps there, 1000 ft beneath the sunlight, I glimpsed the smallest corner of an organism so great and timeless that even the seas and continents could not bound it in.

Active mine openings, 1931:


See the world, they
told me...

bayou goula towhead

the sea test

the circumnavigator pt5
the circumnavigator pt4
the circumnavigator pt3
the circumnavigator pt2
the circumnavigator pt1
falling dream
the darkness
one hell of a mile 3&4
he will return
the believers
the horror pt2
the horror pt1
death valley

paradise of outlaws
the mountain climbers 1&2
brought to surface
one hell of a mile 3
the lost world
inner gorge
a ghost story
the riddle
slaying the minotaur
heart of darkness
public lands
organ music
two sought adventure
the virgin river
the road north

steal the world
the end of the world
el dorado
the valley of the kings 2
the valley of the kings 1
one hell of a mile 2
one hell of a mile 1
the mountain climbers rr4
heroes rr3
rainy roadtrip 2
rainy roadtrip 1
the transgression
sinister 2
sinister 1
new chapter

like sedona?
torn in two
bridge to nowhere
the door
hitting the wall
elusive 2
elusive 1
pick up lines

revisited 2
revisited 1
which way?
lost mines
in their footsteps
a dance with death

casting the bones
mountain thief
the deer hunter
strange temple
burial pt. 3
burial pt. 2
burial pt. 1
the apparition
return to hell
the lower depths
underground lake
stretch sewer
the hidden lab
shadow movements
meager rations
sw8: the conclusion
sw7: lost gold mines
sw6: the big tubes
sw5: gold!
sw4: el calderon
sw3: redondo
sw2: ghosts
sw1: westward bound
formaldehyde dreams
the underdark
in the beginning