arbretenere
Yves Rohmer

Treehugger dug up this strange, sad story about L’Arbre du Ténéré, an acacia tree that for decades lived in the Saharan desert, in northern Niger, far far away from any other trees. Its roots reached deep into the soil to suck up water more than 100 feet below the ground, and it was thought to be the remnant of a once-large grove that might have existed when the region was less arid.

But, even though this tree was in the middle of nowhere — reportedly 250 miles from any other tree — it was still hit by a car, twice (that we know of). The first time, sometime between 1939 and 1959, a military truck backed into it and broke its branches. The second time, in 1973, a truck driver, allegedly drunk, just plowed right into the tree and broke its trunk.

You can still see the tree. It’s just in a museum now. Which is nice and all, but less special than a tree living in the middle of desert. Thanks, cars — you’ll clearly go to any lengths to ruin something cool.