Stories tagged with abandoned

May 2013

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Party's over
/ Thailand, Malaysia
Not content with a patriotic summer of piss-poor weather, lukewarm Pot Noodles and flat beer in plastic cups, my boy Frank shot me an email and made tracks for Asia.

April 2011

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Echoes of a Soviet occupation - Part 3
/ Latvia, Estonia
Plans to stay in Riga had been ditched in favour of putting in a few hundred miles overnight. The Estonian leg was a long one and the only way to get round it all in time to make flights home was to keep going. I don't think there was total agreement in the car about this option, but it was the one chosen nonetheless.
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Echoes of a Soviet occupation - Part 2
/ Latvia
ith the sun going down at the end of our second full day we rolled into Ventspils on the western coast of Latvia. Our encampment for the night would be amongst the smashed remains of gun emplacements, block-houses and bunkers. There's something very satisfying about finding a good spot to bivvy down.
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Echoes of a Soviet occupation - Part 1
/ Latvia, Lithuania
Not a good idea. In Lithuania are many bad people. You have gun?" I laughed - I think we all did. "No. No guns." Was he serious? Apparently so, because when I shot the question back at him he answered by going into the room next door and coming back with a .38. It was loaded, and we were drunk.

February 2011

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BCN
/ Spain
Never let siologen choose your accomodation. What he'll probably do is arrive at the hostel, settle himself into a 6-bed dorm with 5 teenage girls before welcoming you into your room by shoving the door open. The Asian girl inside will almost definitely fly off the handle and proceed to go nuts about the lack of manners.

October 2010

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The Balkans - Part 6
/ Hungary, Slovakia, Austria
This was one built not around known locations and guaranteed photo opportunities but instead just that basic curiosity of wondering what's around the next corner. Each country had been different, both as a nation and as a stage on which to survey some of the lesser-visited parts.
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The Balkans - Part 5
/ Romania, Hungary
By now we were comfortably into our first full day in Romania having arrived the previous evening, checked into a hostel in Bucharest and chalked-up our first Romanian bust. The manhole was wide open, you see, but we never expected there to be anyone down there...
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The Balkans - Part 4
/ Bulgaria, Romania
Disbanding as we did with bags and cameras only seemed to enthrall the residents even more. By now they looked bemused about the whole thing but made no effort to stop us. They re-appeared en force, one presenting us with a mobile phone. Siologen put the phone to his ear to be met with the expected question.
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The Balkans - Part 3
/ Croatia, Bosnia, Serbia, Bulgaria
Bosnia. If you're old enough to remember the news coverage then the very name is enough to conjure up images of burning buildings and cars, weathered soldiers, UN vehicles and refugees. Indiscreet in our red Seat we passed through the border controls with no issue and continued our course towards Sarajevo.
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The Balkans - Part 2
/ Croatia
Two hazards in particular awaited the four of us as we bumped along the track and parked by the nose of a decaying DC-3. The lesser threat was from the border Police who are known to check the area for illegal migrants, but more importantly we were aware that the area is ridden with landmines.
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The Balkans - Part 1
/ Hungary, Austria, Croatia
Five minutes later an attendant arrived and showed us out to the carpark where a gleaming red Seat was waiting. I'm sure the car cowered away as siologen dumped his trademark blue rucksack into the boot, but it was too bad - bitch was ours now. Forty minutes later blue flashing lights appeared in the rearview mirror...

August 2010

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Those dark satanic mills
/ England
And there they were, indeed looking dark (at least the windows were) and satanic. Neither myself nor DLB were, however, among them. We were instead being summoned towards a pick-up truck, the driver of which had spotted us as we scampered from one bush to another. For us, the war was over. For the second time.

April 2010

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London to Latvia (and everything in between) - Part 6
/ Sweden, Denmark
One dull clunk produced no results, as did the second. The third produced more fascinating results: the fans sparked into life, enveloping me in a cloud of rust. At this point, annoyed and covered in dust, I descended the ladder and barked at siologen to stop messing about. And then he threw the fourth lever...
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London to Latvia (and everything in between) - Part 4
/ Lithuania, Latvia
As we moved through the place we found some recognisable buildings: a vehicle garage (empty), a sports hall with various murals on the walls and in one corner an oily looking substation building was literally wrapped in barbed wire and wooden shuttering. One can only imagine just how nasty it was in there.
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London to Latvia (and everything in between) - Part 2
/ Germany
The first night in the car produced two stiff necks and a bemused stare from an elderly lady hobbling past the car. The windows were misted up and siologen lolled to one side in a grey sleeping bag that generally made him resemble a vast slug. I climbed out of the car, had a stretch and grinned at the old bag.

November 2009

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Slaying a black widow
/ England
The inky black of the Medway swirled menacingly. Out there moored in the current was the dark silhouette of an abandoned submarine, listing dangerously to one side. Beyond the vessel the river pushed out to the Thames Estuary and the opportunity for a lonely night upon the waves.

October 2009

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Slinging the Red Hook
/ USA
Many had been there to explore the various floors and loading bays; many had taken photos. Eric though had other ideas for the Red Hook grain terminal, voiced with intermittent laughter as he threw various rope equipment onto his apartment floor. Crucially there was a 200ft rope, a harness, some slings and then ascenders.
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Welcome to The D
/ USA
In one simple yet alarming movement an arm swooped in through the open window and the keys to the van were gone. The blur of a second officer shot around behind the vehicle, coming to a stop on the other side of the window which for a good few hours now had been my pillow.
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The Canada Malting plant is dead
/ Canada
Standing forlorn on the Toronto Harbourfront, the old Canada Malting silos were no strangers to intruders. For the several decades after they fell into disuse countless people breached the somewhat-fortified exterior. On a bright day in October 2009 a small band of us risked our necks to clamber up and into the remains of its workings.
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Confluence
/ Canada
Standing near the top of Horseshoe Falls, for the time being just another tourist, I watched the waters never-ending procession with unease. A gigantic cloud of mist and a terrifying persistent rumble completed an experience like no other I can think of, but one that would later that night be completely surpassed.

September 2009

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Through the supply line
/ USA
Through the trees we could see the shape of the High Bridge. This mass of steelwork was built to ferry the old Croton Aqueduct across the river, carrying millions of gallons of water down into Manhattan from the Croton River. Long since disused, we sought a way in to investigate this curiosity.
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The Jet Lab
/ USA
Surrounded by broken fencing and barbed wire, the nature of the enclosure was clear: signs declared it a Restricted Area. And naturally photography was completely forbidden. We picked our bags from their heap on the back seat, said goodbye to Yaggy and dashed for a hole in the fence.
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The rotting carcass of Glenwood Powerplant
/ USA
The years have been anything but kind, and after the salvage of turbines and generators, the shell has been left to the elements. On rainy days water pours in, rotting wood and metalwork alike. The two chimneys stand tall, but for how much longer?
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Things fall apart
/ USA
To enter Yaggy's Eagle River Power Station we had to cross some exposed wasteland watched-over by a man in a portacabin. Once inside all of us relaxed and toured this mighty ruin. Water ingress has hastened it's destruction, with the beautiful roof above the turbine hall on par with those at the grandest of railway stations

June 2009

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Fear and loathing in Upper Silesia
/ Poland
Feigning compliance we followed the man as he gesticulated towards the hut, positioning himself beside the open door and pointing inside. What, in there? Knowing reefdog would agree without question (it was hardly a difficult decision to make) I countered the guard's offer by indicating the gates and murmuring an idea in English.

May 2008

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Anarchy at Moss Side
/ England
Despite an assumed 14 years of neglect, the place didn't seem to be doing too badly. The ward blocks looked sinister: barred windows and little observation slots in the doors. Ultimately we gained entry to both floors of both blocks, but that first time was the most exciting, for we had no idea what was to be found inside.

August 2006

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Nothing lasts but nothing is lost
/ England
It's hard to believe that it's over six years since I first explored the semi-abandoned Tate & Lyle sugar silo, and harder still to think that it's three and a half years since I climbed amongst the debris and severed steelwork to photograph the demolition of the conveyor tower.