Behind the Photo: Inside the World’s Largest Caves

Photo by Carsten Peter
Sunlight illuminates the mist inside Hang Son Doong cave in Vietnam. (Photo by Carsten Peter)

Looking at Carsten Peter’s photo of a Vietnamese cave blanketed in a mystical mist, and reflected in a crystal clear pool, it is easy forget that this is a real place on planet Earth. You could be excused for thinking this image was a product of Hollywood magic.

As a National Geographic photographer and filmmaker, Carsten has visited the world’s most extreme environments. He has rappelled into active volcanoes in the South Pacific, chased monster storms in Tornado Alley, and documented huge caves, like the one above, in Vietnam.

He is obsessed with devising innovative photographic techniques that allow him to capture dramatic, never-before-seen images of places few humans have dared to go.

“I was part of an expedition to explore a huge cave system in central Vietnam that had just been discovered the year before. The largest cave, Hang Son Doong—it could fit a skyscraper! It also has skylights, and that’s the light source in this photo and for the jungle at the bottom. The lighting and humidity in these caves made photographing them very difficult. The day I took this photo was quite misty—as usual—which made —> Read More Here


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