The Wet Desert Geographic Location in Caledonia | World Anvil
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The Wet Desert

The wet desert is the name given to the undulating bogs that dominate the lowlands beyond the highlands in the territory of the Cornavi in the far northwest of the land, essentially cutting the territory off from the rest of Caledonia.   These bogs are found all over Caledonia but none are so vast and unforgiving as the wet desert. Stretching unbroken for forty miles from the foothills of Scaraben in the East to the watch hill of Ben Griam in the hinterlands and all the way to the northern shores. An area so vast that the bog stretches as far as the eye can see, those who venture to cross it unguided rarely return. For the wet desert is a lifeless place, a wasteland devoid of tree cover or shelter. Nothing breaks the horizon to provide shelter from the unforgiving winds that blow there.   The soil is made up of a spongy black peat mat rooted deep down to the bedrock. When one walks over it they can feel the earth bounce and squelch underfoot. This peat is cut from the earth and heaped in stacks to be used as fuel for fires. The peat is covered by an endless blanket of mosses, morasses and heather of brown and dun hues sprinkled with a dash of purple and white from the annual flowering of the heather.   The endless bog is only broken by countless pools of acidic water. These pools can be tiny puddles to large bottomless ponds filled with deep black mud. A number of large lochs can be found here, the source of the many great rivers that divide the region. The water of these rivers flows black from the sediment of the peaty ground around their source. The rivers teem with an abundance of salmon and trout, which in turn attract a number of birds that reside along the riverbanks. These are often the only life seen by those that venture out into the wet desert along the riverbanks.   It was not always this way. Before the fall of the Druid kings, the wet desert was a great forest of pine and birch. The climate changed, growing colder and wetter, peat took over where plains once existed and the forest fell where it once stood. The remnants of this forest are often found preserved in the peat banks.   For although the wet desert is a poor habitat for supporting life, one of it's most interesting properties is its ability to preserve the remains of the dead. Those buried in the peaty soils are preserved from decay. The Druids are want to bring sacrifical offerings of noble blood to the wet desert, carrying out their ritual of the triple death before casting the bodies into the deep pools. Here they sink into the black mud. These bodies are sometimes found by accident when cutting peat for fuel preserved wholly without any sign of decay.  Not only are their bodies found but all their belongings. Some of these bodies are as old as the age of stone. The Druids take their ancient belongings away but place the body back into the deep pools to be preserved again. For they fear the wrath of disturbing the dead. These ancient belongings are highly coveted amongst the Druid order. They hold the belief that these items are a gift from the spirits of the dead and that they are imbued with magical qualities.
Wetland / Swamp

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