After leaving the first location of the Kasuga Mine (*Kasuga Mine A*) *Damon*, Andrew and I continued to the second site – much easier to find, much easier to enter, much more popular on the internet. Not so much amongst foreign urban explorers in Japan, the more so amongst Japanese. Nevertheless hardly anybody is willing or able to share some hard data about the Kasuga Mine (not to be confused with the still active Kasuga Gold Mine in Kyushu!). One of the things I found out is that the Kasuga Mine was a dolomite mine. Dolomite is used in the production of magnesium (as a source of magnesium oxide) and as a concrete aggregate – sometimes it’s used as an ornamental stone, but its physical properties (hardness, cleavage) doesn’t make it very popular for that use; it was one of the materials though the *reactor at the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant* was filled up with after the catastrophe, so 25 years ago it probably saved mankind…
When we arrived at the second mine in Kasuga the sun was already pretty low and time was running out. The area was dominated by a huge complex made of steel and wood in rather questionable condition – this place was definitely abandoned. While I was cautiously taking photos Damon was fearlessly all over the place. At one point he was climbing through a collapsed building, not knowing if there was solid ground under the debris or not. He made it to the other side alive and found the entrance to a very old-style mine, so I was like “Screw it!” and followed him. Luckily I brought my flashlight, because it was dark in there – darker than a black steer’s tookus on a moonless prairie night. And luckily I was wearing hiking boots, because the water pipes in there were leaking. I know for sure, because I was able to take a photo of one of the leaks. Without a tripod. Modern digital cameras are wonderful!
What we found was indeed a very old style mine shaft. Surprisingly spacious as I was able to walk upright for most of the time, nevertheless claustrophobic, especially the parts where the wooden support logs were rotting away and already collapsed. If you liked the video I took at the *abandoned Japanese Sex Museum* you will love the one I took at the Kasuga Mine. It felt like straight out of a survival horror game. And since the mine could have collapsed at any time I guess it really was like straight out of a survival horror game – we actually saw dead ends where it already happened. The absolute highlight was… Well, if you really want to know then watch the video, I won’t spoil it for you here. But what I saw made the Kasuga Mine a very memorable exploration! (That’s the reason why the videos are first this time – the photos will spoil the third video…)
Nevertheless I was very happy to leave this abandoned mine shaft. It just didn’t feel right. Back at the main building we didn’t want to overuse our luck and it was almost dark already anyway. And this is how the exploration of three abandoned mines on a single day ended – on a high note!