|I would say that it all stemmed from my time spent climbing on the roofs of schools in my area. It started very small, at my elementary school, but that quickly stopped being exciting so I looked around for other schools to climb. After a while I had climbed onto and explored the rooftops of every elementary, middle, and high school in my entire city, but was still really interesting in exploring more things.|
But I don't consider those to be real "explorations" as they are pretty open, and there isn't much exploring going on, rather just the thrill of being on a cool rooftop.
I'd say I got really into urban exploring after checking out a long stretch of abandoned aqueduct with some friends. It winds around on the side of a hill covered by lots of trees, and crosses some relatively interesting points along the way. I have pictures, but they're taken on an iPhone so nothing top quality.
This is a shot of the aqueduct.
A little ways down it crosses over a huge drop. I'd say it was about a 70 foot drop but i'm terrible at estimates so who really knows.
Near the end there's a water tower, but you can see it from pretty far back.
Further down from the bridge there's this tunnel.
I was lucky enough to see a train when I walked by.
Another shot of the cool graffiti.
We got near the end and went over to the aqueduct, but I got too excited and
forgot to take any pictures of it from the ground. This is the best I could find of what it looks like as a whole.
I took a couple pictures while on it too.
Seeing the aqueduct and the water tower were definitely what sparked a real interest in urban exploring. A little while later I heard about this website and here I am.
I've been on a couple explorations since the aqueduct. I can post stuff about them some other time.
|I always liked empty buildings, but when I was younger, the reason to get into them was to skate or get drunk inside. We had an abandoned grocery store near my high school that we built into a pretty great skate spot. It wasn't until I was around 18 that I got more curious about genuinely exploring. I worked inside my first building. The owner let us use a warehouse part of this old Greyhound bus barn (in spite of the fact that the roof had already collapsed in a couple of places), and a couple days I showed up really early, let myself in, and explored. There were still offices upstairs, a big safe, and some furniture. The bus repair area was really interesting, and had bus-sized repair bays in the floor like the guy goes into when you get your oil changed.|
The place was torn down by the city (Portland) a couple of years ago. I still regret that I never thought to take any pictures, but here's a mention if it I found online: http://portlandpre...-greyhound-garage/
Now I'm in Syracuse and there's abandoned buildings all over the place, which caused me to get more active with planning out adventures (and to get on this board).
|I had recently discovered uer, and really got excited about draining. I was looking around my house for things to explore, and found two drain systems, one small, one fairly large. I explored the small one, part of the big one, and now I'm finally getting to explore things other than drains as well. |
|I've been shooting photos for a few years, and buildings were a nice subject for me to focus on. I took a few pictures of this old college nearby, that's been closed for the past 20+ years.|
They recently decided to tear it down (I'm a bit miffed, because the approved plan was for them to remove the old gymnasium, but renovate the main building).
Last weekend I made my first internal exploration. The construction company wasn't working, but left the gate wide open, so I got a quick look of what it looked like inside. Unfortunately, hearing from people who pass by it daily, it's just about down the rest of the way now.
|Had to been about 18 at the time, never been urban exploring before. Got invited to go this "abandoned insane asylum" by this girl I worked with and her friends. So being the young, single alpha I was I gladly excepted the invite the girl gave me. One hour long drive of 5-6 people crammed into this girls 2 door firebird later and there we were on the side of the road of the woods in bumfuck, I don't know where. A short walk aways lied the infinite beauty of a decaying complex know as Henryton State Hospital. (Name dropped because it was completely leveled September of last year.) The night went on laughing and running about the place, a pretty hefty bottle of vodka fueling our rowdy endeavor. Almost 75% of the way through the night I figured out I was supposed to be focused on getting this girl but was having too much fun exploring and seeing what the place had to offer. By this point the vodka had a good hold on me and I was in no shape to do some proper courtship. As the fun dwindled we head back to the car where, I think, I puked and passed out in the car until we made it home.|
Needless to say her and I never worked out. But, hey, I never stopped exploring since.
pictures and stuff
|Empty castles and old abandoned houses/farm houses were always my thing since I can remember.|
About 14 years ago there was an old century home in Hamilton, Ont. where I live. It was called 'Belvidere House' and was built in the 1840's on the escarpment overlooking the city.
It was am impressive looking place and in the late 1800's a Widow's Walk was added to the roof.
I heard about the house through the news after it was learned that the current owner was applying to have the house demolished. Heritage status was never granted to the empty house and the owner soon had his way and the mansion was leveled.
About 2 weeks before the mansion was demo'd I decided to check it out. I had my trusty 35mm Minolta camera with me and set about taking exterior shots. Then I noticed a POE and in I went without even really thinking about it.
I used 2 rolls of film photographing the interior (except for the basement which was completely dark and very unwelcoming) of the house. Sadly, the rolls of the film were misplaced and I was never able to find them. But if I did find them and manage to have them developed they would be the only known interior photos of the mansion (along with the many exterior photos that I had taken).
|I heard about this place in Miami, went with my brother, and I loved it. I thought of it as a free, fun, and exciting activity that someone my age could do |
|Went to Centralia PA during a road trip to check out the ghost down. By the boarded up church my buddy and I found an abandoned mobile home in the woods. Trashed to hell but excited to go through since it was the first time I'd done something like that. Since then I've always like the idea of the excitement of never knowing what you will find on an exploration. |
|My first real explore was Seattle's Fisher Mill in 2007. After getting very lost on the way to meet the person showing me the place (University District instead of N.E. Bellevue/Redmond), it was already fully dark by the time we arrived. |
Getting in was easy, but at the same time probably the most nerve-wracking and adrenaline-pumping thing I had done to date. I really don't remember all that much about the quick explore we did, it was very much a blur and my mind was just trying to keep up with looking around, taking pics, worrying about getting caught, listening for someone coming, etc.
I do remember all the boots and personal items just left around the locker room, like the workers had left one day, and then were not allowed back in to get their stuff.
I also remember the smell; every room smelled musty, the smell of lots of slowly rotting flour dust plus rodent and insect waste.
Back then, there were quite a few interior lights on, which made me nervous. Looking back it was a blessing, and let us explore without flashlights letting everyone know we were there.
All the machinery and small items were still there; the hooligans hadn't got to looting it at that point
And there was a belt-o-vator that apparently still worked, but we didn't want to make noise
After looking through and going up to the roof, we decided to get out while the gettin' was good, and left as quickly as we came, luckily without incident. I think I was lucky my first explore went so well.
I got lost again on the way back--partly because I-520 was closed--so apparently I was not a good navigator back then.
"See you guys, you never listen to me. I said there was gonna be trouble but you didn't listen to me. You guys are crazy. You know, you guys are self destructive. There's a funny farm and it has your names written all over it. But I'm gettin' out of here. I'm... I smell ice cream!"
|It was a dilapidated log cabin abandoned in the 1980s and left for the most part untouched.|
The floors are covered with trash: papers and books, mostly pertaining to fish and other water dwellers. Condiments left in the cabinets, checks written in the 1980s still on the desk, photo albums full of pictures of people dead or alive. The most interesting detail was the jars of fish carcasses on various window frames and shelves in the home. My guess is this was a scientist who lived here, but we'll never know for sure. Outside there is a shed with fish carcasses lying on the ground.
The intimate peek I was given of a life and home that was no more ignited a craving to experience more of the past and lives once lived. Unfortunately I have no pictures but plan on going back.
|My first UE adventure I can remember was a drainage tunnel system under a suburb. A lot of graffiti, I've been there so many times at this point. I went there while a friend was tagging a giant florescent Satan at a bend in the tunnel. But the cool thing is the further in you go it changes from concrete to gravel and mud. Kind of scary but again I always go back to this place. |
///friendship flies by 100 feet per second///
|The UCLA tunnels.|
That is all.
|It was surreal. This small abandoned navy housing building in the middle of a city! and this is a nice city too. The building had old books and army surplus scattered all over the place, along with an old ammunition housing area that had empty assault rifle clips in it! There was a broken down gym in the basement, lockers, cracked tiles, and it was so strange to have that building just tucked away where no one would expect. I didn't stay very long, because my friends wanted to leave, but I have always been the one in the group to linger and take photos. |
|My first Official UE trip was a demolition site. It all started when they built a new middle school in my town, and I felt the need to explore the areas I had not been allowed in when I was a student there, as well as to see the whole thing a few last times. I became increasingly interested in demolition and abandonment, and visited numerous times, until there was not enough left of the building to be worth it. Since then I have learned about UE and explored multiple demo sites, mostly middle and high schools. |
|First location? It was a gutted blacks-only church out along a county road outside Murfreesboro, TN. The church was about the same size as a typical house, not terribly large by any means... |
It was gutted inside, but never been burned curiously. Nearby was a grave yard with graves dating to the 1880s, also of note that primarily black folks were buried here. I had always assumed that the church was active during the era of segregation, but likely fell into disuse some time in the late 1960s/early 1970s as racial integration became common in Rutherford County.
By the time my cousin and I saw the place in 1998, it was a year or so from being demolished (or just caving in on itself) and after going there a couple times that summer, we'd seen all there was to see.
Second location? a gutted trailer home near another cousin's place. The reason this place was abandoned many years prior, was actually subtle if you didn't know what you were looking for.
The place had aluminum wiring, and I one day got curious and started investigating. I soon found the origin of the small fire that had happened there to an outlet in the trailer's kitchen. It had been installed incorrectly and thus burned up, and the fire spread from there.
"The man who trades freedom for security does not deserve nor will he ever receive either."
|Knew about a building downtown that was an old abandoned factory and was about to be renovated. One day all the windows were knocked out. I went in. |
My friend manhandled me up a roof once.
|my very very VERY first place was just an old mobile home type deal. nothing too fancy or interesting. |
|The very first place I went to was a small airport in my town. Nothing more than two derelict hangers open to the elements with basically nothing inside them. What I consider to be my first actual urbex location, however, was an abandoned psychiatric hospital. I convinced three of my buddies to tag along and when we arrived, we bumped into a group of 5 high school kids, so we teamed up and went exploring.|
1. One of the tunnels connecting the buildings.
2. Shot of an elevator on ground floor.
There's the crazy one, the photographer, and me, the driver, a mix of both. And we're a pretty kickass team if I do say so myself.
|You know I had a tough time thinking back to what it was. I've been to so many samey areas that it was hard to remember. Literally about two blocks away, just across a highway there's a yard of abandoned vehicles. mostly 80's junk but a few classics. It's what got me into all this, well, as a first. |
Originally I only read up on this stuff, and at the time had just my Zenit TTL Soviet made film SLR. Now when christmas came I got a canon rebel T5. That didn't stop me from using the Helios 44-2 lens on the old red unit.
That is one damn fine prime lens. anyways, not really new but I think it's about time I looked for more people. Been too long and I've been in the same places far too many times.
Every building and site has a story, and they are often of mistakes. Learn from them before they are gone forever.
|I guess I started in kindergarten too. We were having this big Hawaiin themed party, and some others and I wandered off up a hill. We found a drain and were under the impression that the devil was down there, and that we needed to find a flashlight and go and kill him. Our feeble little minds couldn't comprehend why our parents refused. |
Then in middle school I went on a few caving expeditions, and fell in love with the underground. I live way out in the country, though, so urban exploration never really connected.
A friend took me one Halloween to this caved in house, beer bottles everywhere, but it was so cool.
Then another friend of mine mentioned that he use the sewers to get around when he had to, and also just for fun. I started researching. Now, I have plans to explore a maintenance vent at my school (except there are camera everywhere and they freakme out), a large drain near the school, and there's also an abandoned school about three miles away, but someone lives in trailer right next to it, and my parents would throw the largest fit imaginable if I go caught three miles from home, alone.
So really, I'm forced to wait until an opportunity presents itself, or I get a job and can sneak of fusing that excuse.
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