Pyrenees mountains between Spain and France

cirque-de-gavarnie-french-pyrenees
cirque-de-gavarnie-french-pyrenees

The Pyrenees mountains is in the South West of Europe between France and Spain, it’s a formidable barrier between the Iberian Peninsula and the European continent.

Guide Pyrenees

The principality of Andorra is located between the peaks. Parts of six French departments and six Spanish provinces are in the Pyrenees region. Perpignan, Bayonne, and Orthez in France and Girona, Huesca, Pamplona, ​​Spain and Irún are other important cities. The French-Spanish border, unchanged from the Peace of the Pyrenees (1659), generally follows the watershed. The high stage of civilization reached in the Pyrenees by early humans show the prehistoric cave paintings of Altamira and Aurignac.

The chain extends in a straight line for almost 435 km from the Bay of Biscay to the Mediterranean Sea and its maximum width is 130 km. About two-thirds of its surface is in Spain. Of the three main features of the Pyrenees, the middle section is the one with the higher altitude. The Pico de Aneto in Spain is the highest peak, other peaks are the Pic de Vignemale and the Pic du Midi d’Ossau in France and Monte Perdido in Spain. The Cantabria mountains are an extension of the western Pyrenees.

The Pyrenees formed during the Tertiary period. Crystalline rocks are found in the highlands, while limestone rocks are highlighted in the lower slopes. Of glacial feature in the distant past, today there are no glaciers in the Pyrenees. The permanent snowline is at an altitude of 1,830 m.

A feature of the French Pyrenees, which have the southern slope much steeper, are the streams that often fall in waterfalls, and natural amphitheatres known as circuses, including the famous Cirque de Gavarnie. The most important rivers are the Garonne, the Aude, and the Adour, while the rivers Spanish Pyrenees examples are the Aragón, the Cinca and the Segre. The Pyrenees are a division climate. In fact the northern slopes receive abundant rainfall, while the southern slopes have a climate less rainy.

Roads in the Pyrenees mountain range

The Pyrenees are traversed by two railway lines, but the main railway lines linking Spain with France along the Pyrenees along both coasts. A number of roads crossing the Pyrenees, including those who use three main galleries while four through high mountain passes often snow in the winter months.

Most mountain passes are at high altitudes and difficult to follow, but despite this were often crossed by invading armies and barbarian hordes as well as countless medieval pilgrims to Santiago de Compostela. The Col de Perthus, used by the Romans, and Roncesvalles, famous for the legend Roland, the steps are the best known.

Economics of the Pyrenees mountain range

The Pyrenees are rich in timber and pastures, and the many waterways are exploited by hydroelectric plants. Talc and zinc are mined here. The population lives mainly in livestock and agriculture. On the French side are the most popular resorts, including Pau and Tarbes, famous for the beauty of their landscapes and mineral waters.

Lourdes, one of the main places of pilgrimage, attracts millions of pilgrims every year. On the Atlantic coast, in the Pyrenees, there are fashionable resorts such as Biarritz, Saint-Jean-de-Luz in France and San Sebastian in Spain.

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