|Location:||Pulpi, Almeria province|
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Ángel Fernández-Cortés, José María Calaforra, Javier García-Guinea (2006):
The Pulpí gigantic geode (Almería, Spain): geology, metal pollution, microclimatology, and conservation,
Environmental Geology, Volume 50, Number 5, July, 2006, pp 707-716.
|As far as we know this information was accurate when it was published (see years in brackets), but may have changed since then.
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A geode is a term of mineral collectors, meaning a bubble in the rock which is filled with minerals. Because of the hole in the rock, water seeping through the pores of the rock transports minerals to the hole and in the mineral rich water crystals start to grow. generally geodes with a few centimeters in diameters are sold, items with half an meter are really expensive. But sometimes a geode with a size of several meters is discovered, and actually any natural hole in the rock which is big enough to be entered by a human is a cave, thats the definition of the term.
At the Mine of Sierra del Aguilón the geologist Javier Garcia-Guinea discovered a natural geode which 8m long and about 1.8m in diameter. It contains selenite (gypsum) crystals which look like blades of glass, transparent and up to 50cm long. He named it Geoda Gigante.
The geode is a unique natural wonder and it is protected by law. However, there is the urge to develop it for tourism, make it accessible for tourists. This is both an economic and an educational topic. But unfortunately the crystals are very delicate, easily shattered, and destroyed even by changes in humidity and carbon dioxide content of the air. So the development of the geode itself like a show cave is absolutely out of the question.
The institutions concerned with this natural monument have decided to create a them park around the Mine of Sierra del Aguilón. This park will include an exact replica of the geode. This would allow people to see at least the replica. The park is finance with a public budget of some two million Euros.