Near the small town of Gryfino in northwest Poland lies one of the strangest forests you will ever see.
The Crooked Forest, as it’s known, is a collection of around 400 pine trees. These are no normal pines, though. At the base of each tree, the trunk takes a 90 degree bend before gradually curving back upwards. All of the curves point in the same direction: north.
It is estimated that the trees grew for 7-10 years before they were held down, creating their oddly-curved trunks. What caused this, however, is a bit of a mystery.
Some people think it was a natural phenomenon. One theory suggests that a massive snowstorm buried and flattened all of the trees for an extended period of time when they were young.
Some even hypothesize that unique gravitational forces in the area morphed the trees, though there is little to no evidence to support either of these theories.
Because of the consistency and apparent deliberateness of the deformations, it’s likely that they were man made. The most widely-spread theory is that local farmers planted and manipulated the trees back in 1930, hoping to create exquisite furniture with the bent shapes of the trees.
The story goes that the onset of World War II forced whoever was tending the forest to abandon the project. We may never know what actually caused these trees to grow the way they did, but either way, they’re a pretty phenomenal sight.
Check out some more pictures of the Crooked Forest below. Click an image to enlarge:
(h/t EST Facts)