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PostPosted: 06 Aug 2016 9:08 pm 
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Grand Master

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A conversation came up the other day - was Les Toustounes once much taller, and was it a victim of a landslide or collapse due to stone mining in the late 17th through early 18th C?
Curious to know if anyone has visited the Roc and seen evidence for this?


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PostPosted: 07 Aug 2016 7:12 am 
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Queen Bee
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Hmmm.... need to verify that we are talking of the same Toustounes.

Les Toustounes is the vast exposed section of mountainside that overlooks the gorges du Bézis.


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PostPosted: 07 Aug 2016 12:55 pm 
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That's some rough terrain just to get stone?

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PostPosted: 07 Aug 2016 1:27 pm 
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Sheila wrote:
Hmmm.... need to verify that we are talking of the same Toustounes.

Les Toustounes is the vast exposed section of mountainside that overlooks the gorges du Bézis.


Yes, this is what I mean, the rocky outcrop at the gorges du Bézis. I am looking for documents that suggest either that the outcrop was mined at some point or that it was much taller and collapsed into the valley.

I think the local spéléo club explored some of the caves around here as well, so they may know.


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PostPosted: 07 Aug 2016 1:28 pm 
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Barbarian Storm wrote:
That's some rough terrain just to get stone?


Yes. If the stone contained ore or other minerals it might explain it though. A marble quarry perhaps?

Have you checked out the area in person? Any thoughts?


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PostPosted: 07 Aug 2016 3:35 pm 
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gladium wrote:
Barbarian Storm wrote:
That's some rough terrain just to get stone?


Yes. If the stone contained ore or other minerals it might explain it though. A marble quarry perhaps?

Have you checked out the area in person? Any thoughts?



I have walked some of the slopes near the entrance but never really went into the valley.
But I know others have been around there quite a lot.
The eastern mountain that makes up the entrance looks very interesting. At a distance, it does look a bit like Blanchefort.

Why do you think landslide?

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PostPosted: 07 Aug 2016 8:43 pm 
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Barbarian Storm,

So in conversation the topic of mining at the entrance to the valley came up. I looked into this further today in fact, and there are references to the valley having a marble quarry. This area was once heavily mined (by the standards of the time) for gold and other ores.

The area is also riddled with tunnels and caves. Had the side of the mountain given way in a rain storm due to limestone/sandstone or a similar weak rock being eroded, and some of the rock landslided into the valley, this may have resulted in marble quarrying?


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PostPosted: 08 Aug 2016 8:52 pm 
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That other marble quarry is directly north, really directly north in a line, past the Rialsesse so I guess it's possible.

What do you say, Sheila?

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 Post subject: metamorphosed
PostPosted: 08 Aug 2016 10:05 pm 
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Queen Bee
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The calcite limestone of les Toustounes lies on an east/west lithotectonic fault line.


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PostPosted: 16 Aug 2016 12:33 pm 
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Would be nice to see this this area without the trees.

There's a surprising number of rocky pointy cliffs on the south side of the valley that reminds me a little bit of the Roman goldmine Las Médulas in Spain where rock was exploded with the use of water, therefore creating a landscape of sharp cliffs. However, a large source of water is missing from what I can see in this valley. Or is it...?

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PostPosted: 16 Aug 2016 5:52 pm 
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My theory includes the premise that the underground river that follows the major east-west fault line, runs beneath Les Toustounes.


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PostPosted: 16 Aug 2016 6:25 pm 
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Queen Bee
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The same underground river that starts it's journey along the fault line at the "perte" of La Blanque here.....

Image

some waters go north to Rennes-les-Bains - underground, following the secondary faultline and re-surge at Le Bain Fort...and the rest divide west to Campeau - and eastwards to Sougraigne, Fourtou, then westward underneath the ridge to La Berco Grande, under Les Toustounes, to La Mourette, then back round heading southwards beneath the ridge that is Blanchefort, Roque Nègre, loops up between Le Cardou and Bac de la Barrière, up over Montferrand, and the Lac de Barrenc eventually leading back to complete the circuit at Fourtou.

Just a theory mind.


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PostPosted: 16 Aug 2016 11:22 pm 
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Sheila wrote:
The same underground river that starts it's journey along the fault line at the "perte" of La Blanque here.....

Image

some waters go north to Rennes-les-Bains - underground, following the secondary faultline and re-surge at Le Bain Fort...and the rest divide west to Campeau - and eastwards to Sougraigne, Fourtou, then westward underneath the ridge to La Berco Grande, under Les Toustounes, to La Mourette, then back round heading southwards beneath the ridge that is Blanchefort, Roque Nègre, loops up between Le Cardou and Bac de la Barrière, up over Montferrand, and the Lac de Barrenc eventually leading back to complete the circuit at Fourtou.

Just a theory mind.


Circuit, cercle... of the underground stream.
The source of the water?

What is eye-catching at Bezis is the western/southern slopes near the entrance to the valley. Sharp rocks... not yet worn down by the hands of time.

Image

Image

Image

Image

Image

Image

I am sure there is some geological explanation.
Or, was did hydraulic mining once take place in the valley of Bezis?
Compare to the Roman mine at Las Médulas and we see some similarities:

Image

Image

Just compare the rocks, colour does not match... but the rest?

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 Post subject: No similarity...
PostPosted: 17 Aug 2016 5:05 pm 
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One landscape is Karst topography - the other shows an area of alluvial deposit.
One landscape is like a swiss cheese of soluble limestone and the other is an ore bearing placer deposit.


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 Post subject: Re: No similarity...
PostPosted: 18 Aug 2016 10:58 am 
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Sheila wrote:
One landscape is Karst topography - the other shows an area of alluvial deposit.
One landscape is like a swiss cheese of soluble limestone and the other is an ore bearing placer deposit.


Just pointing(!) out the similar features between the two places 8)

Sharp pointy rocks, not yet worn down by time.
The mountain slopes.
Roman mines in both(!?) areas.

How were the Bezis slopes created?

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PostPosted: 16 Oct 2016 9:47 pm 
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I spoke to a geologist about the area and he mentioned to me that earth quakes are a feature of the region, which can result in landslides and some of the weaker stacks collapsing in very extreme cases. Interesting.


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