The Ered Glos (El. White Mountains) are the highest mountains in Iaurdor. Reaching an average of 14,000,' they stretch 700 miles, from Calendrudor in the west, and throughout northern Rhutalath. There are many myths about their creation, the most popular being that they were created in the Age of Stars by Balzot, as a barrier to stop the Toltoni pursuit. The truth, however, is that they are the result of natural tectonic movements, where the great continental plate of Southern Parzifica collided with that of Iaurdor.
The Ered Glos are covered with snow throughout the year, hence their name, although at midsummer the snows are confined the topmost peaks. Originally the home of the great Norsan giants, they were replaced by the Ursani Morrim, then by the Dwarves, Rhutalathians and Salasians respectively. The Western Reaches are the location of the great cities of Salasia, Kazad-Ar, Death-Pass and Snake-Spire.
THE WESTERN REACHES
The Western reaches of the Ered Glos terminate in wild and uncivilized lands of Calendrudor. Snow-storms and powerful winds are strongest here, and the peaks and slopes are steeper and more treacherous. Compared to the rest of the Ered Glos, the west was only recently occupied; the Norsans found the climate and altitude unsuitable for their great civilization, and only a few Ursani cities were built here. Only with the coming of the Dwarves, a hardy and resistant folk, were the harsh climes and deep chasms properly conquered.
The Duinon River
The great river Duinon, which flows south from Malidor, passes through the western flanks of the Ered Glos. A wide and navigable river, it is nevertheless avoided by the mariners who traverse the river futher north, through Daenor and Ilmanor. Jagged rocks, scattered shallows and strong winds make the river dangerous to all but the very best sailors.
The Duinon valley is lush and forested, and contains most of the ruined Ursani cities which occupied this part of the range. The Gold Trail crosses the river via the majestic Golden Arch, a dwarven-built bridge of outstanding beauty.
The Casar River:
The Casar river is an off-shoot of the great Duinon, and flows parallel to it many miles to the east. Like the Duinon it is wide and mostly difficult to navigate. It is crossed by the Dwarron Bridge, a stone bridge with over thirty arches, and the site of a great Dwarven battle.
This beautiful vale is the location of the city of Salasia.
THE CENTRAL EXPANSE
The central portion of the Ered Glos is home to the largest peaks. It is throughout this area that the once glorious Norsan civilisation prospered. The Ered Norsa (El. Norsan mountains) join with the northern peaks of the Ered Glos, and the proximity to Daenor means the region is prone to occasional Orcish attacks.
The Troll Fells are technically part of Rhutalath, despite their geographical connections with the Ered Glos. They take their name from the high population of Hill Trolls which make their home here, under the thrall of the Shadow-Mage of Daenor. Not surprisingly, the Fells are favoured hunting ground for the Dwarven Troll-Slayers.
The region is hilly country, though few of the hills rise over 800'. Forests abound, though these are often small and dense, and separated by extensive open ground. The soil is rich and ideal for farming, although few Rhutalathians and only the most insane of Dwarves dare venture into the hills.
This Vale is desolate and reputedly haunted. Very little is known of its history, though it was once believed to have been an Ursani settlement. The remains of an old city, known as Venn Karr, seem to attest to this. See Rhutalath for more information.
THE EASTERN FLANKThe Eastern flank of the Ered Glos comprises the lowest peaks, and is the most densely populated. As well as being the location of hundreds of Rhutalathian farms, towers and castles, it is also the region in which the majority of the Ursani lived, before being ousted by the Rhutalathians. Ursani ruins are scattered amongst the valleys and reaches, and many small roads cross the range. The Eastern Flank is considered the safest part of the Ered Glos, although it is still avoided by the lowland Rhutalthians.
The Riddle Caves:
Once the centre of the Ursani Religion, this cave complex is now inhabited by countless foul and undead creatures. The ziggurat which once guarded the southern entrance has long since been pulled down, and now its path and caverns are open to all. The caves stretch for hundreds of miles in all directions, and are filled with traps and Ursani enchantments. Legends state of a huge treasure hidden in the very centre of the mysterious labyrinth, though few have tried to find it. The Riddle caves are largely unexplored, though there are rumoured to be at least a dozen entrances. The Rhutalathian militia use a few of the shallow caves as fortresses, but none venture very deep into the caves.
In the 1471 the caves were entered by Valkrist, the heir of Kuros, as well as his aids Steel and Berunez. They were the first to pass through them successfully. Four years later, the passing was attempted again, by Blood-Wolf, Auberon and, again Berunez. Berunez remains the only man to have successfully negotiated the traps twice.
ROADS AND PASSESCountless trails and passes exist in the Ered Glos, though these are usually marked only by mile-stones, and are suitable only for foot; wagons and horses find the going tough indeed. The only real roads are those made by the hands of the Dwarves or Salasians.
The Nagri Road:
This Dwarven road runs between Snake-Spire and Death-Pass. Built long ago by the Nagrim Dwarves, it is paved with stone and can fit three wagons abreast at its widest point. It is now used mainly by the Danorrim.
The Gold Trail:
The Gold Trail stretches east from the Nagri Road, all the way to the sea. Built upon the remains of the old Norsan Road, the Dwarves replaced the old stones and carved out new routes, and made the road once again navigable. Its western end is better maintained, and is travelled frequently, particularly just north of Kazad-Ar. The eastern end is less travelled, due mainly to the proximity of Karr Vale and the Riddle Caves.
The Dwarron Road
The Dwarron Road was made by the Salsians shortly after their first contact with Kazad-Ar. It links the Dolen Valley with the Dwarven city of Kazad-Ar. Despite its purpose, it is rarely used, due to the secluded nature of both the Dwarves and the Salasians.