Zombie fires burn at -60°C outside Oymyakon, the coldest permanently inhabited place in the world

The peat deposit in the photo is burning at -60°C outside Oymyakon, the cold pole. Photo: Semyon Sivtsev

Photographer Semyon Sivtsev shared videos and photos of zombie fires outside his home in Oymyakon Village, The Pole of Cold.

I photographed them near the grasslands near the village of Khara Tumol, not far from Oymyakon (3.6 kilometers west of Oymyakon, The Siberian Times). Simeon said he was in the area where wildfires raged in the summer.

This area outside Oymyakon was the first to catch wildfires earlier this year, with satellite imagery showing blazing flames on May 1, 2021.

What followed was the worst wildfire season yet in Yakutia, Russia’s coldest and largest province, with fires destroying more than 8 million hectares of forest.


Zombie fires burn at -60°C outside Oymyakon, the coldest permanently inhabited place in the world


Zombie fires burn at -60°C outside Oymyakon, the coldest permanently inhabited place in the world
The first forest fires of 2021 were recorded outside Oymyakon at the beginning of May 2021; Devastating forest fires – 2021 in Yakutia, and their aftermath. In pictures: The Siberian Times, MieneKiene, Yakutia Ministry of Emergencies


Simeon witnessed a large number of these zombie fires around Oymyakon, some of which were eventually put out by the spring thaw.

“I know at least one zombie fire has been burning for several years in the Mundullakh district, near Oymyakon.

It was extinguished by melting snow and heavy rain, and a lake formed in this place four years ago. Peat is burned and replaced with water; This also helped with the thawing of permafrost, said Semyon Sivtsev.

Video of peat fires burning at -60°C outside Oymyakon, a cold pole, and lake in the Oymyakon region, formed at the site where peat fires have been burning continuously for several years. Video, photo of Semyon Sivtsev


Zombie fires burn at -60°C outside Oymyakon, the coldest permanently inhabited place in the world

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