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Geology/Mountain water


Having recently visited the Pyrenees, specifically Estany de Sant Maurici, and witnessing a spectacular waterfall cascade, it occurred to me that I could not explain where the water came from. The cascade emanates from near the top of a peak (2817 m) dwarfing other local peaks. There was no snow above or below. There must have been millions of gallons being discharged a day. A simple and childish question: how does the water get there and where from?

Thanks in advance

Hi Chris

All of the water flowing down the Pyrenees originates as rain or snow melt. Even in the summer rivers will flow because the water seeps into the ground becoming groundwater which also flows downhill until it springs out into streams and rivers. The upper areas must have significant groundwater stored in the rock and alluvial valley fill. I hope this helps. Keep exploring and sorry for the late reply.



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Michael Goff


I have over 20 years experience in Hydrogeology, I can answer questions about water resource development, well construction and testing, artificial recharge and general groundwater topics.


I have worked as a consultant in Florida and California, I have worked for the water utility in Las Vegas, NV and am now working as a consultant in Abu Dhabi, UAE. I have designed, constructed and tested numerous production and artificial recharge wells and managed the largest direct injection AR program in the US.

Bachelor of Science Degree - Geology - Western Michigan University, 1986

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