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herradura barranco garganta diablo

Barranco de la Herradura & La Garganta del Diablo
Erosive processes that shaped this volcanic building.

The Barranco de la Herradura-La Monja is located northwest of the Municipality of Puerto de Rosario. It is one of the set of open valleys that have developed perpendicular to the Central Valley and extend east-west.
The Devil's Throat is a place of singular scenic beauty. In addition to housing its wealth of fauna and flora, this ravine teaches us, like an open book, its geological evolution. These processes have been complex, and the ravine has required many millions of years to reach its current configuration. That is why it is necessary to travel back in time to understand the processes that led to its formation.
Specifically, the Barranco de la Herradura is embedded between Morros del Cortijo and Montaña del Gamón to the north and Montañeta or Montaña de la Herradura to the southwest. This morphology of large elongated and sub-parallel hills separated by wide valleys, correspond to the remains of the volcanic building Tetir . Its activity began about 20 million years ago, originating the stacking of thin basalt flows, gently sloping towards the sea, thus configuring the side of the stratovolcano.

28.533885, -13.873079

Volcanic activity on the island resumed 5 million years ago.

About 14 million years ago, volcanic activity ceased and during the next 8 million years, erosive processes took place that shaped this volcanic building (Tetir), giving rise to wide valleys and steep areas, with sharp and elongated ridges that are known with the local name "Knives." Volcanic activity on the island resumed 5 million years ago and 1.8 million years ago, a group of volcanoes, San Andrés, La Caldereta or Temejereque emerged, with punctual emissions, of an explosive type that originated the conical buildings near the Barranco de la Herradura, and whose emissions (pyroclastic flows, lapillis and basaltic pumps), covered the relief previously modelled in that stop of magmatic activity.
Since then, it is the erosive processes of the wind and torrential waters that are in charge of fitting and modeling that end up configuring the relief seen today.
All this geological history can be read in an exceptional way downstream of the Barranco de la Herradura dam. Where it is clearly observed how a brutal fit occurs due to the erosive action of the wind and torrential water that carries these pyroclastic materials, increasing their erosive capacity. This fitting exposes the flows of the Tetir building and remains of pyroclastic material such as lapilli, attached to the slopes, can be observed.
From the gorges you can see the stacking of olivine basalt flows, which have been shaped by the fluvial-torrential action, forming steep subvertical walls and flat bottoms and sometimes softening the cavities and arches of ancient volcanic tubes.

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