Through the fire

In San Bartolomé de Pinares, Spain, residents celebrate the eve of St. Anthony’s Day with the Luminarias Festival. St. Anthony is the patron saint of domestic animals. One of the traditions of the festival involves riding or jumping horses through bonfires, which is believed to purify the animal and protect it in the year ahead. Townspeople say the practice dates back at least 500 years, coming from a time when smoke was thought to ward off the plague. Animal rights groups say the practice is cruel and barbaric, but the city government claims that no horse has ever suffered injury. 
Reblogged from National Geographic

Bold and blue

Yellowstone National Park is home to more than 10,000 geothermal features. This photo, which hasn’t received any color enhancement, was taken from a helicopter almost 2,000 feet in the air. The different naturally occurring colors are a product of combinations of microbes, temperature, and light. 
Reblogged from National Geographic