Remember those old “Ripley’s Believe It or Not!” cartoons?
EPCAMR staff has created its own version to highlight some of the oddities found around the Coal Region. In honor of Halloween, we’ve decided to showcase our first three “EPCAMR’s Believe It or Not!” cartoons! They are “The Loch-Mess Monster of Red Lake,” “The Avondale Pit Cheerio Bowl,” and “The Curse of SHARP Mountain.” EPCAMR will be releasing a few “EPCAMR’s Believe It or Not!” cartoons each month. Keep an eye out and enjoy!
The Loch-Mess Monster of Red Lake
Our first oddity is based on Red Lake, also known as Newport Lake. Red Lake is located in Nanticoke, PA and was once a stripping pit for the Glen Man Colliery. It gets its name from the abandoned mine drainage (AMD) flowing in from mine discharges around the area. The 20-acre polluted lake has been left untreated and many come to view the strange coloration left behind by iron-oxide from the AMD.
The Avondale Pit Cheerio Bowl
The Avondale Pit Cheerio Bowl was once a stripping pit located in the Avondale section of Nanticoke, PA. This stripping pit has since been reclaimed but was once a prime illegal-dump site filled with hundreds of old tires, trash, and even a rusted car! Avondale is also the location of the worst mine disaster in Pennsylvania history. The disaster occurred because the breaker, which was located directly above the shaft, caught fire, trapping the miners inside.
The Curse of SHARP Mountain
Sharp Mountain is located in Pottsville, PA. The mountain was heavily mined for anthracite through the early to mid 1900s. It’s called “Sharp Mountain” because of the steeply pitched anthracite coal veins. Today, the veins remain exposed, leaving the mountain with 43-acres of crop falls. There has been an ongoing “Sharp Mountain Reclamation Project” to attempt to close the open veins, some of which go down 300 ft. So far the project has had little success.