The Stone Mushroom of Piana Crixia
Against all logic
What it is and where it is
In the Crixia Regional Nature Park one comes across a very unusual mushroom. No, refasten your baskets and pots and pans: this one is not harvested, much less eaten. The Piana Crixia Mushroom is some fifteen meters tall and has an estimated weight of 500 tons! It towers over us with its grandeur and we cannot help but wonder how its existence is possible, how the rock remains poised on its column, and, most importantly, how it was formed.
Why it is special
The existence of this unique attraction in Savona's hinterland is due to a form of erosion that is truly exceptional for Liguria and its surrounding areas. The more we look at it, the more we become convinced that the huge cap defies all laws of physics and logic in its stubborn as well as improbable balancing act atop the column that holds it up.
A bit of history
It is hypothesized that the boulder that serves as the hat protected from erosion, caused by the waters of the Bormida River in very remote times, the portion of "conglomerate" below, creating this curious rock formation, while the soil all around was slowly being removed. Beware, however: erosion, albeit very slowly, continues to this day, so in the more or less distant future the "cap" of the Mushroom is destined to collapse and the column, no longer protected, will be gradually dismantled by the action of rainwater.
It is rumored that the mushroom had so impressed Napoleon that he wanted to transport it to France, but even he could not find a way to move it without destroying it.
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