Centralia, PA

I’m standing on what used to be Route 61, the now closed off southern path into Centralia, Pennsylvania.

Underneath the road, and much of the old town, is a fire that started burning in the coal mines 50 years ago (May 1962). Temperatures in certain areas of the fire/mines exceed 1000 degrees, signs of which are evident from the toxic fumes that can be seen from cracks in the pavement and rocky hillside next to the untouched cemetery. The town has been leveled except for a few stragglers (the houses and its occupants). The underground fire will burn for at least another 200 years.

Unsurprisingly, I ran into other people exploring what was left of the town. I don’t feel like I need to come back.

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