MOUNT PICO IS PART OF THE MADALENA VOLCANIC COMPLEX, AND IS THE HIGHEST MOUNTAIN IN THE MID-ATLANTIC ARCHIPELAGO OF THE AZORES, AS WELL AS IN PORTUGAL, STANDING AT 2351 M (7713 FT) ABOVE SEA LEVEL.
Mount Pico is located on the eastern side of Pico Island. A crater on the top of the mountain is about 500 m (1600 ft) wide and 300 m (980 ft) deep. Its rare volcanic smoke can be characterized by a strong sulfur odor. In 1982 Mount Pico was established as an official Natural Reserve, protecting and preserving a territory of more than 15 km2 (1500 hectares).
The ascent is relatively easy for people in good physical condition and takes up to four hours to reach the summit. However, in winter, the peak including the crater is covered with snow, while frequent rainfall is possible throughout the year due to unstable weather conditions and close proximity to Atlantic cyclones.
THE FIVE HIGHEST PEAKS IN THE AZORES:
- Mount Pico - 2351 m (7713 ft), on Pico Island, in the archipelago of the Azores.
- Pico da Vara - 1103 m (3619 ft), in the Serra da Tronqueira range, on São Miguel Island, in the archipelago of the Azores.
- Pico da Esperança - 1053 m (3455 ft), in the Norte Grande parish, Velas municipality, on São Jorge Island, in the archipelago of the Azores.
- Cabeço Gordo - 1043 m (3422 ft), on Faial Island, in the archipelago of the Azores.
- Serra de Santa Bárbara - 1021 m (3350 ft), in the Angra do Heroísmo municipality, on Terceira Island, in the archipelago of the Azores.
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