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The Intermittent Spring of Fontestorbes


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The intermittent spring of Fontestorbes is a natural wonder.
It was already famous during antiquity and throughout the centuries it was attributed magical or divine powers.
Its name Fontestorbes comes from the Latin "fons turbatus" which means "enraged fountain". During the dry periods between the middle of July and middle of November the spring becomes intermittent.
A cycle starts with the water gushing noisily from the bottom of the cave with an impressive speed, and then it calms down and flows normally during 10 minutes until it reaches the maximum level from where it forms a cascade that feeds the river l'Hers. Subsequently the water starts to recede to finally disappear through a breach in the right part of the cave.
The whole cycle lasts between 60 and 90 minutes.
Only thirty intermittency phenomena are identified in the world.
The intermittency of the spring was never fully explained because divers have never managed to climb the siphon that causes the phenomenon.

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Address:The spring is located near the town of Bélesta on the national road towards Montségur, in Ariège department.
Web Site:
Visiting Hours:Free access all year round


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