Photographer's Note

Muddy Volcanos, Buzau, Romania

Between Berca and Arbanasi, about 30 km from Buzau, we come across one of the best known geological reserves of Romania, the Muddy Volcanoes. After crossing a concrete bridge over the Buzau river, we enter the small town of Berca, where a little billboard guides us towards a country road winding among dry hills and oil derricks. A rather distressing landscape, but endowed with a certain charm lent to it by its very solitude. When the wind blows, you can feel the smell of oil and salt. A few km farther on, we come across a billboard which guides us towards "Piclele mici." We leave the car here and after having climbed for a while, a strange landscape opens in front of our eyes: a large overflow of mud over slopes and hollows. These formations called by the local people "picle" are known under the name of the "muddy volcanoes." The name of "muddy" is quite clear, but why "volcanoes?"

Purely and simply because of their cone-shaped form with a crater in the middle. In the case of the real volcanoes, the lava comes through the volcanic horn from a hot magma cradle, it gets out through the crater and flows over the slopes turning solid. The muddy volcanoes have been formed through a similar process with the only difference that here the lava has been replaced by mud. However, the real difference is a geological one: the lava was prepared in the telluric depth of the planet where temperatures rise to several thousand degrees, where the metals are melted and where the engines that create the mountains roll on , producing devastating earthquakes and moving the continents. The real volcanoes belong to the kingdom of Pluto the Hot and volcanologists are in charge of their study.
The muddy volcanoes originate in the layer closer to the surface of the earth crust. The gas associated to the crude deposits in the sedimentary rocks, make their way towards the surface through clefts, reach the underground water layer, where they also involve the waters in their movement and on their way upwards, they also wash the clay and the other rock fragments they might meet with.


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Additional Photos by Dan Tataru (DanTe) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 75 W: 8 N: 83] (575)
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