This is every kid's dream. Imagine traveling through a local forest and coming across an abandoned military pillbox with an open hatch leading to a massive bunker rife for exploration. You and your buddies drop inside the hatch and discover that this bunker is enormous and build into parts of an abandoned quarry complex as you end up descending a five-story concrete staircase into the underground lair. Now for the best part. Not only are you having a blast pretending to be Indiana Jones exploring a once-secret military bunker, you come across abandoned military equipment! You first come across a rusting pair of German 77-mm cannons from World War I. It gets even better, as you move further throughout the bunker you come across relatively new French military gear that's in great shape considering that it's been sitting underground for years. You round a corner and right in front of you sits a six-wheeled French ERC-90 Sagaie armored reconnaissance vehicle, sadly it's lacking the 90-mm cannon that the vehicle is normally armed with. Next you come across a Panhard VCR armored personnell carrier that's in nearly perfect condition and finally a old military truck.
Well as the photos above and below show, if you can make your way to France and find this bunker that's been used on and off since around World War I for everything from military purposes to mushroom farming, you can have this expereience. The only trick is finding the place. S. Marshall at Pridian.net who took these awesome pics in 2008 won't reveal the facility's location.
Bunkers full of rusting Cold War and World War II gear are rumored to be all over Europe (heck, the U.S. Army still has massive underground stockpiles of "prepositioned" tanks in Germany, a legacy of the Cold War). Usually, these bunkers are found to be empty and falling apart (like the famous underground Soviet sub base turned museum in Ukraine). This is the real deal; one of the few times we've ever seen any evidence to show that sometimes the rumors can be true.
Click through the jump to explore the rest of the bunker without that musty underground smell (and without the thrill of being there yourself).
The ERC-90 armed recon vehicle greets you.
The Panhard VCR armored personnel carrier, both the VCR and the ERC-90 were designed in the 1970s.
One of those German guns from World War I.
The stairway into the bunker.
A close-up view of the APC
The recon vehicle again.
An old French military truck
Inside one small part of the bunker filled with debris left by mushroom farmers.
Inside the APC.
Another scene inside the bunker.
Yet another room.
Remnants of mushroom farming from the 1970s in the ex-quarry part of the bunker.
Explorers pose with the rusting German cannons.
Another shot of the cannons.
Electrical gear inside the bunker
The way out.