It is more than 3,000 meters (nearly 10,000 feet) above sea level, making it one of the highest large natural bridges in the world. It also ranks among the largest such structures known.
“It’s one of the most spectacular discoveries ever made in this region,” Joe Walston, Director of the Wildlife Conservation Society’s
“The arch is emblematic of the natural marvels that still await discovery in
Wildlife Conservation Society staff Christopher Shank and Ayub Alavi discovered the massive arch in late 2010 in the course of surveying the northern edge of the Bamyan plateau for (the landscape is home to ibex and urial wild sheep) and visiting local communities.
After making the discovery, they returned to the
The total span of arch—the measurement by which natural bridges are ranked—is 210.6 feet in width, making it the 12th largest natural bridge in the world.
This finding pushes
Consisting of rock layers formed between the Jurassic Period (200-145 million years ago) and the more recent Eocene Epoch (55-34 million years ago), the Hazarchishma Natural Bridge was carved over millennia by the once flowing waters of the now dry
The world’s largest natural arch—
“Afghanistan has taken great strides in initiating programs to preserve the country’s most beautiful wild places as well as conserve its natural resources,” Peter Zahler, Deputy Director for the WCS Asia Program, said.
“This newfound marvel adds to the country’s growing list of natural wonders and economic assets,” he stated.