We went to see what’s at the bottom of the “Hell Well” in Yemen

The bottom of the "Hell Well" in Yemen is indeed hell. We went to see what's at the bottom of "Hell's Well."

It's known as Barhout's Well, or by a name that is certainly more evocative: "Hell's Well." It is a natural sinkhole, located in Yemen, southeast of the Arabian Peninsula, at the center of some popular legends that want it to be a prison for djinns, the genies of Middle Eastern folklore.

For the first time, some explorers have descended to the bottom of this black and scary hole in the ground.

Did they really find any imprisoned geniuses?

What did the exploration of Hell's Well in Yemen consist of

The feat bears the signature of the Oman Cave Exploration Team (OCET), consisting of eight experienced cavers. They climbed 112 meters vertically and underground, from the edge of the shaft, which measures 30 meters in diameter, to the blackest depths of the sinkhole.

This is a record: previous explorations had reached about half of the shaft, turning back perhaps because of a bad smell coming from below. Members of the Oman Cave Exploration Team, however, revealed no harmful odor in particular, except for the smell of dead birds, which does not pose a life-threatening danger to humans.

What exactly did the explorers find at the bottom of Barhout Shaft

About decaying birds, here's the thing: there was nothing very pleasant down there, because in addition to the bodies of the birds there were also snakes and "cave pearls" that don't have any of the beauty of sea pearls. In fact, they look like gelatinous cocoons and can't be said to encourage anyone to collect them.

All this didn't deter the new Indiana Joneses. "Passion drove us to do it," said Mohammed al-Kindi, a professor of geology at a German university and a member of the expedition, speaking of the undertaking as "something that will reveal a new wonder and part of Yemen's history." Samples of water, rocks, soil and some dead animals were collected and will be analyzed soon.

The snakes did not seem very aggressive, while the caves gave rise to beautiful formations. The cave beads, in this case lime green, are created by the dripping of water on the bottom and are kept smooth by the water smoothing the surface.

Giuseppe Giordano