Archive for December, 2009
The Sabinar de Calatanazor is a remarkable forest of Spanish juniper (Juniperus thurifera) in Soria near the village of Calatanazor. Read The Sabinar de Calatanazor is a remarkable forest of Spanish juniper (sabina albar – Juniperus thurifera) in Soria near the village of Calatanazor. The forest is a fenced dehesa grazed by cows preventing undergrowth from developing. Some of these ancient junipers are 20 metres high, and the Sabinar de Calatanazor is, I believe, the largest Juniperus thurifera forest in the world, covering 22ha. More information here
The Spanish juniper is found in Spain, France, Morocco and Algeria, and is Continue reading
Aneto is the highest mountain in the Pyrenees at 3,404 metres is part of the Maladetta ridge. The Aneto glacier is still the largest in Spain with 163 ha. though it is melting fast due to climate change and is predicted to succumb by the mid-late 21st century. The glacier covered some 692 ha in 1894 at the close of the so-called Little Ice Age. Aneto’s French name, Pic de Néthou, is in disuse as the mountain lies entirely within Spain, specifically in the province of Huesca in Aragon. First climbed in 1842 by a Russian named Chikhachev. Continue reading
The Torca del Carlista in the Basque Country is the largest cavern in Europe. It is currently only accessible to expert cavers. It is the fourth (not the second as some sources claim!) largest cave chamber in the world. Legend has it that a Carlist follower threw himself to his death here rather than be taken alive.
Photo of the Torca del Carlista
The 18th century Cortijo del Fraile (The Friar’s Estate) is a wonderfully atmospheric spot in Cabo de Gata Natural Park with a dark secret. The farmstead was the site of the tragic Crime of Nijar, the murder which inspired Lorca to write Blood Wedding. Scenes from The Good the Bad and the Ugly and several other films were also shot here. Photo by Enkayte on Flicr.
El Torcal de Antequera in Malaga is one of the most impressive karst landscapes in Europe. Photo by Jakub Botwicz from Wikipedia.