“The Death zone” Himalayas
There’s actually a clue in the name “death zone” as to why it’s a bad idea to go there which is why it’s my number-one pick.
Image source: MSSBTI/com
The death zone is an altitude of 8,000 metres above sea level where there is not enough available oxygen for humans to breathe. Most of the 200+ climbers who have died on Mount Everest have died in the death zone.
Sane humans shouldn’t go there yet they do. They do it in high enough numbers that there are traffic jam issues at the top of Everest! People spend tens of thousands of dollars to risk their lives to stand on the roof of the world.
I took a scenic flight on Yeti Airways over the Himalayas and drank champagne while looking at Everest and trying to take selfies. There’s a very straightforward example of two types of people.
North Sentinel Island
North Sentinel Island is the home to the Sentinelese, a people who violently reject any contact or approaches from the outside world and remain virtually untouched by modern civilization.
It’s one of the Andaman Islands, an archipelago in the Bay of Bengal. The island is nominally part of Indian union territory, and the Indian authorities recognize the islanders’ right to be left alone and restrict themselves to remote monitoring and also don’t prosecute the Sentinelese for killing unwanted visitors.
The Sentinelese have repeatedly attacked approaching vessels. This resulted in the deaths of two fishermen in 2006 and most recently, an American missionary. These are not a friendly people.
They don’t want outsiders there. They will kill you. Leave the Sentinelese people alone like a good sane person.
Image source: Lifehackeraustralia/com
Lake Nyos is a crater lake in Cameroon on the flank of an active volcano. It’s one of only three known lakes which experience what’s called a lake overturn where dissolved carbon dioxide (CO2) suddenly erupts from deep lake waters and forms a deadly gas cloud capable of suffocating all living things including humans, wildlife and even insects.
Because the carbon dioxide is heavier than air, it descends and pushes oxygen away, suffocating everything within the cloud. Two eruptions in the 1980s killed over 1,700 people and 3,500 livestock leaving it an eerie and completely lifeless area before the carbon dioxide dispersed.
Why do sane people avoid it? Because the gas levels are rising again and the natural wall holding the lake back is weakening.
Probes of Lake Nyos’ bottom waters by a team of U.S. scientists found a 26% buildup of carbon dioxide since May, 1987. “It’s a stick of TNT waiting to go off,” said research scientist George W. Kling, who recently finished his analysis of Lake Nyos water samples at the Marine Biological Laboratory in Woods Hole, Mass.
The event that killed 1700 people is expected to repeat itself and possibly on a grander scale than previously. It’s not so much “if” … as “when”. Be a sane person. Avoid the Lake Nyos area.