The Forest of Columns
Before arrive to our destination, we will drive our jeep to Wadi el Ramla to visit the holy gravesite of Sheik Hebus.
In Gebel Fuga the desert holds one of the most impacting geological phenomena of Sinai. In the middle of the landscape, this mountain emerge full of tubular lava-like twisted pillars of rock. Like black vertical stalagmites surrounded by the beauty of a reddish arid sandstone desert: The Forest of Columns.
Bedouin legends like to think that this spectacular formations some of more than a meter where formed by lava, but geologist explain the column appearance through the effect of the iron oxide:
“The rocks in Gebel Fusa are composed of hematite (a form of iron oxide). The iron oxide was dissolved out of the sandstone bedrock, to which it imparts a reddish colour, by hot water emerging from deep in the earth. As the water reached the surface and cooled, the iron oxide precipitated in a ring around each source, forming a tube.” Dr Bonnie M Sampsell, "A Traveler's Guide to the Geology of Egypt", 2010
Walking among the columns, one could say to be walking in another planet.
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