Any unexplored areas left on earth?

Well, astronomers exploring galaxies far away, with Hubble or by way of the Planck Observatory are exploring exactly that, and before. Not “exploring” by Colibri’s definition, and perhaps not the op’s, but by some people’s definitions it counts.

I think “explored” means boots on the ground.

Actually, much of the Canadian Arctic Archipelago is north of the Canadian Shield, and was tropical when the islands were originally formed in the Paleozoic – there have been discoveries of oil, and IIRC coal and ores, in the area. (Though your basic point that the interior of some islands may be ‘unexplored’ by Colibri’s definition is no doubt true.)

No you can’t. There are hundreds of places that are blurred, blacked out, or have false image overlays. There are also areas difficult to penetrate by satellite imagery, due to cloud cover, dense forestation, or topography. And if you believe Wikipedia, there are places that simply haven’t been photographed.

That is weird. You can get there but not by following a link, apparently. Google “Bahamas B2B Andros” and it should be the first hit.

That is a very cool little story, well told. I once had to do some research on indigenous use of/claims to cloud forest patches (Chinantec in Mexico, Ixil in Guatemala, Tol (a.k.a. Jicaque) in Honduras, Bribri in Costa Rica, and Ngoe-Bugle in Panama); and I found, just as you did, that they generally didn’t go there much.

(You may have bumped into my doctoral advisor, who help do some terrific mapping work with the Emebera-Wounaan around when you did this expedition…but enough IRL chitchat…back to your regular scheduled Dope thread!).

I opened this threat to say that, IIRC, there are parts of the Darien Gap that haven’t been explored by non-natives. Would this be an accurate assessment?

No one has mentioned the Empty Quarter yet?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rub’_al_Khali

There is areas of the empty quarter that have never been explored just because it’s so vast and there’s no reason to go there. Theres been a few expeditions but a lot remains unseen.

paris catacombs. at least 4 known levels but largely unmapped. most known entrances are sealed by the french government for public safety.

That’s simply not true.

There are large areas of Australia that remain unexplored, and it’s not just the outback. To put this into perspective, the valley that contained the Wollemi Pine is 50 kilometres form Sydney, and was only explored 15 years ago. Once you get into genuine remote areas, there are huge areas that have never been explored.

15 of years ago I was lucky enough to be selected as part of an survey team for the Desert Uplands in central Queensland. This area might just qualify as “outback”, though it’s only 50 km inland. We were dropped in by helicopter and walked out. Took us 9 days, we covered about 60 kilometres, all unexplored.

I also put in a survey site on a station on the Cape, not 15 km from the house. After we finished I told the owner we had placed it in the tea tree swamp at the outflow from the ranges. He thought I was mad or stupid and swore that he had no such swamps on his property. We got into a minor argument and I had to take him back and show him where it was. He was astounded that he has 100 acres of such land on his property and had no idea it was there, He had lived there for over 50 years and had no idea. Once again, the land was almost valueless and access was difficult there was simply no reason for anyone t every go there

This is country that is notionally part of existing cattle stations, but it had never been explored. Because it is ridgy and lacks permanent water it grows little grass, so no roads, no fences and no maps. It’s doubtful if Aborigines ever been went into the country. There’s just nothing there but ridges and gorges separated by scrub.

As I said, this is within a few hundred kilometres of the coast. The further you go inland, the more such country exists. Because it is notionally private land, it doesn’t get random bushwalkers and campers, and because it is so damn rough the owners never get into it. In that part of the world many of the stations don’t even have back fences, there is no need. All watering points are artificial, so cattle can’t cross the boundaries because there is no water. There are swathes of land 50-100 kilometres across throughout the inland that has probably never seen human footprints. While not the size of Texas, thy are a good sized chunk of country.

In more coastal regions there are also plenty of unexplored country, though of smaller size. As already noted, large numbers of valleys in the Blue Mountains just west of Sydney have never been explored. Tracts of Tasmanian forests in the hill country away from the rivers and roads are the same. The further west you go on the mainland, the more and bigger the unexplored regions become. There is just so much of it, so few people and absolutely no reason at all for anybody to go there. When you are talking about places where it takes at least 3 days to walk in and there is no surface water ever, why would anybody ever have explored it?

I imagine that there are such areas in many less densely populated parts of the world. At some point it becomes so difficult to get on and out that the there is simply no point in going in there.

The catacombs are all manmade, are they not? I don’t think that quite fits the spirit of the thread.

yeah, well i thought we ought to include “lost” areas as well. but i agree the OP was clear in his query.

One of the jobs of my mountain-climber cousin was as part of an expedition which headed into a river canyon and traversed it all the way to where it came back out into inhabited land. There was a network of canyons in the area, and it still hadn’t been determined what happened to the river entering the canyon: did it at some point subsume, was it one of the rivers coming out of that mountain range, if so which one?

I haven’t been able to find information on that job (although I remember seeing the documentary, so I imagine it must have been with the people from TVE Program “Al filo de lo imposible”; and no, I can’t ask my cousin, he’s dead, and I’m not planning on asking his brothers because I know what that leads to), but searching for it delivered the blog of an expedition to explore Himalayan river canyons currently being prepared by the Spanish Speleology Federation. Web in Spanish. They don’t say to what extent is the area mapped, part of the idea is to see whether it can be developed for sports tourism.

Yes, it is the first hit, but it still gets me to the “Restricted To View” page. :frowning:

The Jungurudo is in the Darien Gap, so yes. The unexplored parts are mostly going to be in the upper parts of the mountain ranges.

My first guess is Julie V.-R., who I’ve known for almost 20 years. I just saw her last week when she was here in Panama.

I heard there’s a few valleys in New Zealand’s Fiordland which had not yet been explored on foot, as the valley sides are so difficult to climb, and the floor’s so densely forested. Might be out of date on that.

So, in fact, what I said is correct. Outback Australia is about as unexplored as the more remote parts of Nevada or New Mexico. Do you think there are no places in the USA that are just as “unexplored” as parts of Australia?

Yes, there are parts of Australia that are rarely if ever visited, but it’s all been mapped. There are areas that are not thoroughly mapped, but there is zero chance that anyone will discover a new river or mountain. Maybe a small valley or a creek, but nothing geographically noteworthy.

We know what’s there, geographically. I’m sure there are still a few species unknown to science lurking about the place, but that hardly makes it “unexplored” in a the sense that the OP asks. There are no undiscovered tribes out there, no ruins of any lost civilisations, and no major geographical features that have never been seen by human eyes.

Would you say there are parts of Canada and Australia that are basically unexplored by humans?

A lot of the Himalayas was not explored until the mid 1980’s, when due to conflict, the Indian and Pakistan Armies began survey missions.

The Pakistan AF did surveys of the Himalayas in the 1960’s and discovered new 20,000 plus high peaks.

FWIW: I think this island might be the basis for the novel Fragment by Warren Fahy. I read it recently and thought it one of the best Sci-Fi reads I’ve encountered in a long time.