The teenage photographer, after hearing the story of the lake several times, decided it was time to find and take pictures of this mysterious place. In 2021, on a January day after a snowfall, he also set off for Patonia.
When I got there it was a snowy morning, the landscape froze and there was silence. I took the pictures from a bird’s eye view, using a drone, and I can say that the scenery became really special: in the snowy landscape, the eyes opened giant, around them like many eyelashes, many trees stood radially. Recently, in April 2022, when I visited the bottomless lake of Patonia, there was a huge difference compared to the winter landscape and atmosphere.
I got there on the road between Batonia and Mizahiges. Typical view of a storm: easy to yawn, fields, oil wells, acacia forests rarely. I also drove to such a forest, but a small roadside monument was declared: it is certainly no ordinary forest on the Great Plain. This is the inscription on the board: Number 37 in Batonia. On the occasion of the fiftieth anniversary of the eruption of the well. So this is not an average forest, and the lake is not a small pond. You could only hear the birds chirping and occasionally the rumble of a passing car. As the lake approached, the sound of birdsong became louder and more intense. As I was walking, I suddenly noticed a noisy animal above one of the trees: a fish crawling from tree to tree, very close to me. I got to the edge of Bottomless Lake, also known as Crater Lake, and looked down. The scenery was amazing, I think, mostly due to the frightening proportions. The diameter of the hole is just over half a hundred meters, but its depth is infinite – more precisely, it is not known to this day, because divers could not reach the bottom either.
Small in the cross, incredibly deep, piercing the stomach of the earth – she shivered at the thought. So that you could easily walk around the yawning lake, I did it right away. Meanwhile, I noticed that the blue dream was collecting nest material, a few meters away, and two of its friends were standing in an already gloomy green bush. On one stretch, the beach wasn’t very steep, and I was able to go down into the water. Lots of trees fell around the crater at that time, I sat and, as I used to take pictures, I just watched as I tried to blend into the environment. Lots and lots of other frogs and toads started squeaking as I got close to the water. Some air hunters also appeared, and soon they began to mate, indicating that spring was here. The turtles felt it too in the swamp: I sat down to lie in the branches hanging in the water.
But where does this lake come from? I looked it up before setting out and I’ll share the story now because it’s exciting. Sixty years ago, in December 1961, the lowland plant of the National Oil and Gas Fund on the Great Plain, called Zengló, began drilling in Batonia.
„Patonia – no. Drilling “was the official name of the operation, and the site was” Mezőhegyes and
Between Petunia the edge of the forest 48”. The end of the test drilling was at an altitude of 900 meters, so at a depth of almost a kilometer, the drill bit suddenly broke off. They tried to liberate it, that is, to “save” it, but in the meantime natural gas was spewing from the depths with tremendous force, splashing mud, water, pieces of rock, and even large blocks of stone. Huge explosions followed, and their other light illuminated the entire area. Workers in the test drilling tried to block the path of gas leaking into the well with condensed drilling mud, but the mass of gas rising at the speed of sound suddenly ignites by rubbing against the steel material of the drill stem, and with a terrible explosion of flame 40 meters high.
The result was disastrous: the metal of the excavator was softened by the terrible effect of heat, and even completely melted, and with the drilling tools it fell into the abyss with a frightening explosion – it literally swept the earth. Both the local fire brigade and the military helped with the vaccination, and no one was in trouble. All nearby trees were burned, and the widening crater at the site of the eruption filled up with groundwater over time: Lake Bottomless was born in Batonia.
He doesn’t know how deep it can be, swimming and fishing are not allowed in the water, but it is a beautiful and quiet place, I recommend it to all nature lovers with a good heart.
It was prepared with the support of the State Commissioner for Active Hungary and the Center for the Development of Active and Ecotourism.
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