Cave of Crystals

Our Earth still has unexplored regions. There’s Aquatica, the great frontier of the undersea, of special interest to Alex and myself. There is unknown land frontiers of Antarctica, remote jungles and new lands. Theres the Near Space regions, the hard to explore space above the reach of conventional aircraft but below the travels of spacecraft, and theres the Underworld, the subterranean regions below our feet.

Its from the Underworld that I bring today the remarkable Cave of The Crystals.

In 2000, two miners for the Industrias Peñoles mining company were excavating a tunnel when they came upon what turned out to be the greatest display of underground treasure. The Cueva de los Cristales (Cave of Crystals) or “The Sistine Chapel of crystals”, as fondly called by geologist Juan Manuel Garcia-Ruiz, was discovered 300 meters (1,000 feet) below Naica mountain in the Chihuahuan Desert in Mexico.

Home to some of the largest natural crystals ever found, the cave hides in its refuge translucent gypsum beams that reach up to 36 feet (11 meters) long, weighing in up to 55 tons. It truly was a natural marvel in as much as it was a mystery.

Fast track to 2007, and the mystery has been solved. Garcia-Ruiz of the University of Granada, Spain, has claimed that he has finally unlocked the mystery beneath all those shiny, shimmery, splendid gigantic crystals. Studying tiny pockets of fluid trapped inside, Garcia-Ruiz found out that the crystals zoomed up to that size because of the mineral-rich water,which engulfed the crystals at a constant temperate range of 136 degrees Fahrenheit (58 degrees Celsius)……….

The full article is worth reading in full and the pictures are spectacular. There’s a lot more here.


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