The Big Hole, Kimberley

Thursday, August 16, 2001 Craig Grobler 0 Comments

The Big Hole, Kimberley, originally uploaded by Craig Grobler.
The Big Hole is a huge open-pit mine in Kimberley, South Africa and claimed to be the largest hole excavated by hand.

From 1866 to 1914 50,000 miners dug the hole with picks and shovels, yielding 2,722 kg of diamonds. The Big Hole has a surface of 17 hectares (42 acres) and is 463 metres wide. It was excavated to a depth of 240 m but then partially infilled with debris reducing its depth to about 215 m; since then it has accumulated water to a depth of 40 m leaving 175 m visible. The underground Kimberly Mine was mined to a depth of 1097 metres.

There is currently an effort in progress to register the Big Hole as a World Heritage Site.