El Peñon de Guatape, A gigantic rock with an approximate weight of 66 million tonnes, with the height over 650 feet, is a monolithic formation located at the town of Guatapé in Antioquia, Colombia. Once it was worshiped by Tahamies Indians, the former inhabitants of this region. The rock, which is almost entirely smooth, with a long vertical crack on one side. It was carved with amazing staircase of 649 steps, from a distance its looks like a big stitch that holds a mountain that seems to split into two halves. The only way to get to the top of the Rock.
El Peñón de Guatapé — Photo Credit Tim Regan
The wide Antioquian rock base, called "batlolito antioqueño", and the "Peñón" were formed millions of years ago. La Piedra Del Peñol also known as El Peñol Stone or simply La Piedra. The stone stands on the bottom of the hydroelectric dam of Peñol-Guatapé. This monolith was spotted as a border landmark between country farms and the two cities, Guatapé and El Peñol. The cities had long disputed ownership of the rock, and the residents of Guatapé decided to settle the matter by painting the town's name on the rock in huge white letters, "G" and "U". In the 1940s, the Colombian government declared it a "National Monument". The rock was first climbed officially on July 1954. In 2006, Luis Villegas, Pedro Nel Ramírez and Ramón Díaz climbed the rock in a five-day endeavor, using sticks that were fixed against the rock's wall. A new species of plant was found on the top of the rock, subsequently named Pitcairma heterophila by a German scientist. A viewing spot was built on top of the rock, where it is possible to acquire handicrafts, postcards, and other local goods.
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