The natural wonder of live fires in Buzau

Buzoian commune Lopatari has on its territory an important natural monument, the Living Fire, a phenomenon that is found in few places around the globe. It is located on a slope of the village of Terca, of Lopătari commune. It is a natural phenomenon generated by the gases flowing through the cracks of the earth's crust and then spontaneously ignite, forming flames of 50, up to 100 centimeters high.

In Romania, these natural phenomen can be found outside the Carpathian arch and in the Transylvanian basin. But the most "live" fires that burn like permanently lit torches can be admired in two places: in Lopătari commune in Buzau county and in Andreiasu, in Focsani.

The "age" of these live fires is unknown, but research shows that they are the result of volcanic eruptions. Interestingly, these spontaneously burning gases do not come to the surface in the same place, but change when the old holes are closed, opening new ones.

The phenomenon of live fires (similar to that of mud volcanoes) is formed due to natural gases emitted from the earth (hydrocarbons), which ignite by the process of friction with the soil, but also by the sun's rays, burning incontinently. The image is special, although we are not talking about real camp fires, but of some whose height varies between 20 centimeters and one meter (at Lopatari), depending on the pressure of the natural gas inside and the wind blowing. Even if it happens to be extinguished during the rains, they recover. From here they are practically called the names of "live fires" - because they burn constantly, even in winter. At night they are even more spectacular, with yellow-red flames being observed from a distance.

It is reached using the road from the Slănicului valley - DJ 203 K, which starts from DN2 (E85) from Maracineni to Sapoca, following the Beceni-Vintila Voda-Manzalesti-Lopatari-Terca route. Until Lopatari the road is asphalted, but then it follows an unpaved road of about 7 km with the degraded earthwork, missing the signs. Near the Live Fires, the road becomes accessible only to large trucks and forestry tractors.