Crestone, Colorado is home to one of the nation’s only open-air cremation providers. Operated by Crestone End-of-Life Project, families are invited to participate in the cremation – positioning the body, preparing kindling for the fire and placing juniper branches on the pyre to add a pleasant smell to the process. This sort of open-air cremation is reminiscent of the ancient funeral rites commonly associated with Vikings. Although it may seem bizarre to many Americans, this method is still practiced among Buddhists and Hindus in other parts of the world.
High Country News has some beautiful photographs of the crematory.