Photo by Mr Michael Phams on Flickr | Copyright: Creative Commons.
When trying to cross the Huang Pu River in Shanghai’s bustling Bund district, you can either hop on an inexpensive metro car, or you can take a psychedelic trip through the Bund Sightseeing Tunnel.
Located under the iconic Oriental Pearl Tower, the tunnel was built to be one of the Bund’s major tourist attractions, and still manages to draw large numbers of travelers despite costing more than ten times as much as the metro.
After hopping into a small, futuristic rail car, riders are leisurely carried through a tunnel which is covered in pulsing, strobing lights that attempt to simulate flight through some acid-soaked version of space.
The bombardment of flashing lights and colors is accompanied by a rather ominous soundtrack punctuated by an occasional intonation of English words such as “…shining star…” and “…hell…”
It is unclear whether the ride is trying to evoke wonder or terror, but both reactions seem appropriate.
The entire ride lasts just under five minutes, but the mind-blowing light show could have much more lasting effects.
A hadrosaur Skeleton, Field Museum (Credit: Lisa Andres)
by Paul Rodgers.
Dinosaurs would be walking the Earth today if it weren’t for a “colossal” piece of bad luck.
Had the asteroid that brought their reign to an end struck at “a more convenient time” they could well have survived the cataclysm, according to new research.
And that in turn would mean no humans.
“If dinosaurs didn’t go extinct, then mammals would have never had their opportunity to blossom.
So if it wasn’t for that asteroid, then humans probably wouldn’t be here. It’s as simple as that,” said Dr Stephen Brusatte, a palaeontologist at Edinburgh University’s school of geosciences.
“Not only did a giant asteroid strike, but it happened at the worst possible time, when their ecosystems were vulnerable,” said Dr Brusatte, a co-discoverer of the Pinnochio rex tyrannosaur (Qianzhousaurus sinensis) announced in May.
“It was a perfect storm of events, when dinosaurs were at their most vulnerable.”
A triceratops at the American Museum of Natural History (Credit: Wikipedia)
The arrival of the Chicxulub bolide (comet or giant meteorite) 66 million years ago, in what is now Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula, left a crater 20km deep and 180km in diameter and caused a global catastrophe including firestorms, tsunamis, and earthquakes.
The 10km wide rock released enough dust, ash, and aerosols into the air to create a global “impact winter” that lasted for a decade.
The Cretaceous-Paleogene extinction event (formerly known as the Cretaceous-Tertiary) is thought to have killed three quarters of the earth’s species.
At particular risk were large creatures – the dinosaurs – that depended on equally large food intake.
Only those dinosaurs that could fly survived, eventually evolving into today’s birds.
Located at the Chena Hot Springs Resort, the Aurora Ice Museum is the world’s largest year-round ice environment.
You may be wondering just what this means exactly – it means jousting knights, polar bear bedrooms, a 2-story snowball fight structure, and perfectly chilled cocktails in icy martini glasses for visitors of age.
Champion ice carver Steve Brice has created a winter wonderland of ice sculptures depicting all sorts of crazy shenanigans for the polar region, including entire rooms built out of ice and the awkwardly fascinating “ice outhouse.”
Igloos, spheres, a giant chess set, and a full-sized pair of knights jousting on horses are just a few of the amazing examples of Brice’s work.
The entire place is lit up with ice chandeliers that splay the colors of the Aurora Borealis across the glimmering walls, and everything at the bar, from the glasses to the bar itself, are crafted from ice harvested locally and shaped for your delight.
The ambitious beginnings of the museum were to create an ice hotel, but it was decided that being a year-round ice environment was a lofty enough undertaking, and they scaled down to a museum.
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To get this photograph of surfer Brook Phillip catching a wave off Tasmania, photographer Luke Shadbolt hiked for two hours through beautiful scenery to get to Shipstern Bluff on the island state’s southeastern coast.
According to Shadbolt, the surfing here can be a rough ride, as the waves off the coast are “renowned as [some] of the most intimidating and remote waves in Australia … about as far from civilization as you can get.”
This trip marked Shadbolt’s first time at Shipstern Bluff, and a group of locals took pleasure in telling him “all sorts of horror stories about sharks and killer whales and huge unruly swells” while they hiked in.
“It wasn’t quite as scary as they made it out,” Shadbolt says, “but it was definitely an adventure.”
Not wanting to miss any of the action, Shadbolt spent about eight hours in the water to get this shot. His use of a fish-eye lens required him to be as close to the wave as possible, which also gives the image its wide, slightly distorted look.
Shadbolt had no idea who the surfer in the photograph was until he posted it later on his Instagram feed, discovering Phillip’s name from a few Tasmanian locals.