Bisected from the remainder of the Black Range Mountain Chain by the Great Pine Barrens, the Black Ridge mountain cluster winds south where its rugged slopes feed into the south-eastern Barnstable Coast and South Sea. While lacking the glorious feats of elevation found elsewhere in the world, such as within Blaurg Mountain and its sister chain, the Black Range, Black Ridge still possesses an impressive view of Palgard to the west, the entirety of the Barrens’ separating blanket to the north, and Herbie’s bed to the east at its highest point.
Black Range’s highest peaks are defined by Ormond (also known as ‘Spear Mountain’, or ‘Protective Bear’) and Chermona (also known as ‘Sacred One’). Located at the north of the band, at the outer most edge of the Barrens, Ormond boasts an impressive height of 31,000 feet (9889.8 meters) above sea level. His sister, Chermona, rests comfortably at the center of the range, several kilometers from her sibling, with a height of 37,000 feet (11277.6 meters).
Situated at the most northern point of the range's expanse, Mount Ormond poses an intimidating challenge for any who seek to breach Black Ridge’s boundaries by way of the Barrens. With unnaturally difficult slopes, drastic changes in atmospheric pressure and temperature, and one of the highest points in the entire cloister, many have come to plan their travels avoiding Mount Ormond, in spite of adding nearly three days’ worth of time to their journey.
Even so, Ormond is deceptively beautiful. As a gateway into the Barrens, the precipitous behemoth serves as a focus for the swell of mystic and natural energies coagulating at its basin and seeping into the earth. These energies strengthen as they funnel up the mountain, only to be released into the sky as a series of vibrant, magical aurorae throughout the day.
It is said that Ormond is also home to a steadily growing clan of elemental-worshiping trolls, known by locals of the Barrens as the I’ntua.
Mount Chermona stands tall and proud at the heart of Black Ridge, stabbing into the ocean of bubbling, stormy clouds above like an dagger of rock and soil. As turbulent storms – brewed by her brother’s aurorae – sweep south over the remainder of the range, they catch upon Chermona’s slopes and then climb to linger above her peaks. She, like the rest of the stout earthen array, is forever plagued by dark skies, savage winds, and snow and hale. These storms gather strength at Urae’s Rest, sometimes becoming preternatural super-storms, and at their pinnacle, may cast their shadow as far west as Moonwood, and as far east as the cities of Ashville and Last Chance.
This perpetual sequence of storms secludes Black Ridge to utter darkness, wherein the name for the mountain chain is derived. And it is this terrible weather than has made Chermona the breeding grounds for unsavory, terrifying creatures such as: mountain and cave trolls, goblins, giants, archons, and mygalae.
The jewel of Black Ridge, sitting dutifully upon Chermona’s crown of black clouds and white snow, Urea’s Rest (also known as the ‘Heart of Black Ridge’, or simply ‘the Heart’) is a sanctum that very few know of. A nexus of magical power, energy comparable to that which emits from the Shawnee Glacier pours out from this mystical place and bleeds throughout the entirety of Black Range, promoting the seemingly unconquerable conditions through its death-zone. Here, temperatures plummet to an astounding negative -40° Celsius. Winds reach speeds up to 210 mph, which move sharpened fragments of ice and shale in a maelstrom of deadly debris.
At the eye of the storm, a fragment of Urea’s egg remains. Over the millennia, the jagged crystal splinter has been reshaped and remolded by its own powerful energies, and is now nothing more than a sphere floating several meters off the snowy earth. Some say that to possess this crystal would give the wielder control over all dragons in the world, though this is simply speculation based off of folklore.