No Genies in Sight: 'Well of Hell' Sinkhole of Yemen Explored by Cavers
One of the members of the team that descended into the sinkhole said they “collected samples of water, rocks, soil, and some dead animals."
Cavers from Oman have managed to successfully descend into the sinkhole known as the "Well of Barhout" located in the Al-Mahra province of Yemen.
The 30-metre wide sinkhole, sometimes referred to as the "Well of Hell," reaches a depth of approximately 112 metres and, according to some accounts, emits strange odours, AFP reports, adding that some locals believe the sinkhole to be a prison for genies.
The Oman Cave Exploration team, however, didn't discover anything supernatural during their descent, instead finding snakes, dead animals, and cave pearls.
"There were snakes, but they won't bother you unless you bother them," Mohammed al-Kindi, a geology professor at the German University of Technology in Oman and one of the eight cavers who rappelled into the sinkhole, told the media outlet.
He also mentioned that the team “collected samples of water, rocks, soil and some dead animals,” though these samples are yet to be analysed.
"There were dead birds, which does create some bad odours, but there was no overwhelming bad smell," he added.
Yemeni officials said in June that they had never reach the bottom of the sinkhole and that they had no idea what was down there, estimating the age of the pit to be "millions and millions" of years old.