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Nevado de Toluca volcano and Moon Lake, Mexico

February 22nd, 2008 / / Links: Google Earth, Google Maps, Yahoo! Maps, Virtual Earth / Nearest places

Nevado de Toluca is a large stratovolcano in central Mexico, located about 80 km west of Mexico City near the city of Toluca. It is generally cited as the fourth highest of Mexico's peaks, after Pico de Orizaba, Popocatépetl, and Iztaccíhuatl, although by some measurements, Sierra Negra is slightly higher. It is often called by the Nahuatl name Xinantécatl, "Senor Desnudo" in spanish, which is usually translated as "The Naked Lord" although other etymologies have been suggested such as" Lord of the Cornstalks" (chinām(itl) 'cornstalks' + tēcatl 'lord of').

The volcano has a 1.5 km (1 mile) wide summit caldera which is open to the west. The highest summit, 4,680 metres (15,354 ft) Pico del Fraile (Friar's Peak), is on the south side of the crater and the second highest, 4,640 metres (15,223 ft) Pico del Aguila (Eagle's Peak), is on the north. There are two crater lakes on the floor of the basin at about 4,200 m (13,800 ft), the larger Lago del Sol (Sun Lake) and the smaller, but deeper, Lago de la Luna (Moon Lake). A road runs into the caldera to the lakes, making this perhaps the most accessible major Mexican peak.

From the southeast, Nevado de Toluca looks flat-topped, like shoulders without a head. A Nahuatl legend (recounted as part of the legend of Popocatépetl and Iztaccíhuatl) provides a mythical explanation.

[Source: Wikipedia]

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