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Expedition Unknown exclusive: Josh Gates finds a secret tunnel inside a tunnel

Gates is a big man yet he fears no claustrophobic spaces in his search for answers here in Israel. Pic credit: Discovery
Gates is a big man yet he fears no claustrophobic spaces in his search for answers here in Israel. Pic credit: Discovery

Expedition Unknown is back on Discovery and that means host Josh Gates is on the move!

In our exclusive clip, we see Josh entering a cave that was discovered to be a bath with tunnels leading out of it. Then, more tunnels are found deep within the structure of the subterranean spot in Beit Lehi, found in the remote desert west of Jerusalem.

His accomplice in this investigative journey is Dr. Oren Gutfeld.  Gutfeld is considered to be the leading Dead Sea Scrolls archaeologist.

As Josh descends and enters the narrow passageway down into the ground, he says: “I saw this depression from the air from the drone and we wanted to check it because it looks like a blocked entrance to some underground cave or even tunnel.”

In his voice over, he adds: “Oren’s team removes the last few rocks barricading the entrance.”

It looks to be a bath chamber of some sort. Gates says: “It has a look…[it] looks like a tunnel or chamber…”

Ahead of him in the descent, Oren says: “Okay, I’m going in Josh.”

Right on his heels, Gates says: “We crawl inside the claustrophobic tunnel to see if it leads to more hiding places and who knows perhaps the remains of undiscovered manuscripts.”

He and Oren both note the tight fit in the tunnel which would make the average person claustrophobic.

Having a hard time getting in, Josh says, “Wow very tight, kind of shimmy in backward here.”

Oren says: ” Josh…slide in on your stomach.”

They discover a chamber with thousands of chisel marks all around them and in the ceiling, but that is not all. They discover a small hole hiding yet another tunnel.

“The narrow tunnel leads upwards from the ritual bath.  This is exactly the kind of hiding place we’ve been looking for. A prime spot to secret away Dead Sea Scrolls,” Josh narrates.

Josh and Oren drill into a spot where a snake camera is inserted and Josh is able to confirm yet another hidden tunnel behind this thinner wall.

In these suffocatingly tight confines, Gates says: “Once we’ve penetrated the rock will peer inside with a snake camp a miniature camera affixed to a flexible cable small enough to fit through the opening.”

His suspicions proved to be correct. Gates says: “Oh my God, it keeps going! There’s a tunnel!”

A few years ago, Josh Gates and his series Exhibition Unknown jumped from Travel Channel to Discovery and now the stakes are higher for this intrepid Massachusetts native and explorer who chronicles his global adventures on film as he investigates unsolved mysteries in history, lost cities and buried treasures and arcane historical moments left with more questions than answers.

No dilettante, Gates has a degree in archaeology and offers viewers a smart experience, a detailed exploration that brings us all closer to places we would likely never see in our own lifetimes.

Tune in to see how far they get along in this underground maze of tunnels as we search for the possible resting place of the Dead Sea Scrolls.

Expedition Unknown airs Wednesdays at 9/8c on Discovery Channel.

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April is an accredited entertainment writer, interviewer and television critic. She is a current member of the Television Critics Association (TCA), Gay and Lesbian Entertainment... read more
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