Monserrat Island provides an opportunity to discover and understand another piece of the geology of the Bay of Loreto National Park. Surrounded by beautiful beaches and large fossiliferous outcrops, Monserrat tempts visitors to enjoy it for a few days to discover its secrets. You don’t need to be an expert scientist, just an adventurer in search of exceptional places.
From this stunning landscape, anyone can appreciate the impressive and beautiful profile of the Sierra de la Giganta.
Lovers of diving and underwater photography will find underwater spaces of great beauty as well as exceptional flora and fauna adorning great walls and platforms. Monserrat is seven kilometers long, in North-South direction, and roughly three kilometers wide, of irregular shape. Its average height is 240 meters. On the northern end are two small islets, called Las Galeras, where veins of copper have been discovered. The island’s beauty makes travel in panga from Puerto Escondido or Agua Verde, worthwhile.
Monserrat is composed of Miocene-era volcanic rocks covered by a fossiliferous limestone (middle Pliocene in age), covered with Pleistocene gravels. All are faulted into several mesas (Carreno and Helenes 2002).
Curiously, Isla Monserrat is the largest and likely among the oldest oceanic islands in the Gulf of California, its origin is oceanic and was never connected to another landmass.
Some interesting biological facts support this — its herpetofaunal variety of nonavian reptiles (lizards, snakes and chuckwallas) apparently all have been successful overwater colonists. About 20 % of nonavian reptilian groups have colonized by overwater dispersion, and those on Monserrat were apparently derived from those on Carmen Island (Murphy and Aguirre, 2002).
The flora of Montserrat consists of species present elsewhere in the peninsula as: matacora (j. cinerea), palo fierro (Olneya tesota), sour pitahaya (Machaerocereus gummosus) and green stick (C. microphyllum).