Exrel Waste Geographic Location in Sa'elvimer | World Anvil
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Exrel Waste

Once a lush forest, now a barren wasteland

The Exrel Waste is an enormous desert, making up the eastern half of the Vast Wastes region in Central Ardom. Formerly part of the Vast Forest, the Shattering blasted the jungles into oblivion, creating a wasteland with a thin layer of fine, white sand and the complete absence of native life.


Stretching for over 1300 miles from the Lusian Islands to the Frozen Channel and covering nearly all of the land in between the Choked Sea and Anglamar Range, the seemingly neverending landscape of the Waste is widely varied, despite the uniform thin layer of white sand and the lack of any flora or fauna. Most of the Waste is completely flat, but in others (most notably near the Mountains of Oases), the landscape is characterized by abrupt cliffs, deep fissures, and towering pinnacles.

Localized Phenomena

The Exrel Waste's white sands are thought to be the disintegrated remnants of the forest who's destruction created the Waste. Some even believe the sand to possess magical properties, pointing to the strange splitting and shattering that the landscape occasionally undergoes; every few years, the flats suddenly rupture and split, forming the dramatic landscape that other parts of the Waste sees, while the broken areas collapse back into flat land. Sages speculate that the sands react strongly to the æther cycle, even strongly enough to lift and break the land, but proper research has proven impossible given the deadly nature of the Waste and the relative rarity of the phenomenon. Interestingly, these strange changes in the Waste's surface displace significant amounts of the white sand every few years, which trickle through dusty streams into the Choked Sea and float along the water's surface, giving the ocean a chalky appearance and making sea travel difficult and dangerous. The sand often clumps together in sharp, geometric patterns, either forming small islands or sinking to the bottom of the sea. The Exrel Waste is not a desert in the strictest sense; that is, rainfall is not extremely rare. However, as the main water source lies in the Choked Sea—which is coated in the white sand—the rain is almost always strange. It will occasionally warp into patterns as it falls, apparently attracted into these arrangements by the sand on the ground. The rainfall pools into the deep crevasses of the broken areas of the Waste. When these pools overflow, they carry their sand downstream into the Choked Sea, and the process repeats.

Natural Resources

Very few people dare to enter into the Exrel Waste, but those who do hope to harvest even small quantities of the infamous white sands. Whether for the purposes of monetary gain, research, or exploration, the sand has gained immense value in the region. There are also rumors of enormous pockets of crystallized æther lying beneath the surface of the Waste, but the search for such treasures have either failed or resulted in the death of all who entered.


797 years ago, the Vast Forests of Central Ardom thrived and teemed with life and civilization. However, the cataclysmic final confrontation between the Ancient Miriam and the Merelgeth at the end of the Great War triggered the disastrous Shattering, which, among other things, completely evaporated the Vast Forests and buried the ruinous remains. Nearly all of the region's history was lost overnight, and civilization has never returned. It remains an infamous, desolate landscape.
Exrel Waste by James Applegate
Alternative Name(s)
The Eastern Waste, the Broken Sands

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