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The Top 10 Most Extreme Places on Earth

Pitch Lake

Don't go swimming in this "lake"! Pitch Lake, located in Trinidad, is the largest natural deposit of asphalt in the world. The area covers about 40 hectares and is reportedly a shocking 250 feet deep. The exact process that led to its formation is still under debate, but most scientists believe the oozing oil has been forced up from a subduction zone located under the area. As if the enormous tar pit isn't fascinating enough, biologists recently discovered that this extreme environment supports life! Bacteria and fungi have been found in asphalt samples, making their way in the world with as much grace and temerity as the rest of us.

Tags: slideshows, nature, life, extremes, national parks, deserts

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Becky Ferreira

Becky Ferreira is a writer, performer, and raptor based in New York.

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