In the old Roman times they used slaves, and probably many of them, because they then chiseled the stone out of the facing. In later times, Italians used wood wedges to insert into the rock and then wet them. That would split the rock from the pressure. That method continued until late 1800's. Blasting of the rock was used at one stage, but...more
This is a real surreal and huge mountain, and was first called Luna-for moon in Apuan Alps. You could get run off the narrow winding road if not careful from a fast moving truck hauling the marble down the mountain. The magnificent views at the top are well worth the trip. White marble dust is all around. Mountain sides are cut/blasted and the...more
The process of cutting out a large piece of marble is time consuming and takes a lot of preparation work. They now use more intricate methods of slicing the blocks out of the mountain by using precision blasts, and wedge blocks and cutters. In the past the blast was the primary method until early 1900's and it took along with it a lot of good stone...more
This bridge is one of two that go into the mountain. WE went around past the museum on one road. It winds back through many narrow roads and eventually ends up at the bottom of the mountain. It is connecting to a point where the drive up started. This is a nice drive, but be aware, the trucks are coming from that direction to climb back up the...more
The road can be treachuous. The trucks carrying marble down the mountain do take a wide turn on the curves, while the road itself has blind spots when turning the zig zag going uphill. You do not always see the traffic coming down until you are close to the having to make a decison to get off to the edge of the road. Also the drop off in some areas can be a great view, or precarious if you re too close to the edge.
Cararra Marble Quarry, this is north of La Spezia but before Parma.
The mines have supplied marble since Roman times. The scupltor Michelangelo used Carrara marble for his 'David' masterpiece.