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The Riders to the Sky Mountains,[1][5][6] also known simply as the Riders to the Sky[2] and the Sky Riders during the late years of the 15th century DR,[3] were a range of mountains located in the Old Empires area of Faerûn, between southeastern Chessenta and northern Unther.[1][2] After the Spellplague and until the Second Sundering, when the nation of Unther was returned to Toril, the mountains were part of the dragonborn nation of Tymanther.[7][8]

GeographyEdit

The Riders to the Sky were composed mostly of hills, ranging between 3,000 and 5,000 feet (900 and 1500 meters) in height, with cliffs on the southern end.[1][2] They were rich with mineral veins.[4] After the Spellplague, the peaks of those hills were shrouded in perpetual mists originating from the nearby Methmere.[3]

The Jade River fell out of the western slopes and flowed west to the Bay of Chessenta. It was named for its greenish color, the result of algae and caustic runoff of the grey dwarf mining works.[6]

HistoryEdit

An aarakocra civilization had been living in the mountains since the ancient past.[1]

The rebellious Alliance of Chessenta, under the leadership of the warlord Tchazzar, drove the forces of Unther out of Chessenta and beyond the Riders to the Sky Mountains in the Year of Flashing Eyes, 929 DR.[9][10]

The Riders to the Sky became a popular target for Chessentan mercenaries, who hunted the local aarakocra for sport. Their raids eventually destroyed their civilization, sending them extinct by the mid–1200s DR.[1]

In the summer of the Year of Lurking Death, 1322 DR, the Great Bone Wyrm Alasklerbanbastos swept down out of the Riders to the Sky and inflicted a reign of terror on Chessenta.[11]

Circa 1357 DR, both the kingdom of Unther and the city-states of Chessenta laid claim to the Riders to the Sky Mountains, but the Chessentans were in no position to contest this.[12]

After the Spellplague of 1385 DR, with the foundation of the dragonborn nation of Tymanther, some dragonborn clans settled in the lands near the southern hills of the Sky Riders.[13]

During the last stages of the Second Sundering, in 1487 DR, a great portion of the lands of the Tymantheran side of the Riders to the Sky was transposed to Abeir with the return of Unther. Under the leadership of Gilgeam, the Untherans quickly regained control of their former lands in the vicinity of the Riders to the Sky.[13]

LocationsEdit

The northernmost peak of the Riders to the Sky was Dragonback Mountain, a volcano that had been long dormant. It was the lair of Alasklerbanbastos, the Great Bone Wyrm, and a Cult of the Dragon stronghold.[5][6]

By the mid–14th century DR, small mining outposts lay on the Chessentan side of the mountains. They usually sent their goods to Mourktar and Thamor in Threskel.[14][6] The Untheric side was largely cleared lands.[1]

In the foothills of the Riders to the Sky, far from habitation, stood the former tower of the mage Maxiladanarr Torstren. The secretive Magister destroyed it with fire and lightning in the Year of Lurking Death, 1322 DR, in order to fake his own death.[15]

The ruins of the aarakocra civilization lay among the hills.[2]

FaunaEdit

There was a sizable population of monstrous creatures, such as the rare tuuru (pteranodons), which made their homes in the southern cliffs but could be found all over the range.[2][4]

InhabitantsEdit

In ancient times, the hills were home to an aarakocra tribe.[1]

Bandits and outlaw tribes lived on the eastern, Untheric slopes, using the hills as a base for raids on both Unther and Chessenta in the mid–14th century DR.[1][2]

The western, Chessentan side along the Winding River was much wilder. Here, the range was inhabited by trolls who lived in villages on the surface and gray dwarves who dwelled in caverns below ground.[1][2][6] The range was also home to various chromatic dragons, who occasionally claimed the riches dug out of the mines.[6]

After the foundation of Tymanther, some dragonborn clans settled in the southern hills and founded several farms and ranches dedicated to horse breeding. Those clans were either sent to Abeir during the transposition of lands, or killed or enslaved by the Untherans that returned from Abeir during the last stages of the Second Sundering.[13]

A tribe of wilden also settled in the southern peaks during the 15th century.[4]

LegendsEdit

In legends of ancient times, warriors of Unther were said to use the pteranodons as flying mounts. However, their size, strength, and weight made it unlikely that they could carry a human. Instead, unless larger breeds once lived, the legend was usually deemed a fiction.[1]

A community of half-drow exiled from the Yuirwood in Aglarond, long before the mid–14th century DR, were rumored to survive in the Riders to the Sky, and to live alongside the trolls.[1]

Notable InhabitantsEdit

AppendixEdit

ReferenceEdit

  1. 1.00 1.01 1.02 1.03 1.04 1.05 1.06 1.07 1.08 1.09 1.10 1.11 1.12 Scott Bennie (1990). Old Empires. (TSR, Inc), p. 52. ISBN 0-8803-8821-8.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 2.6 2.7 2.8 Ed Greenwood, Sean K. Reynolds, Skip Williams, Rob Heinsoo (June 2001). Forgotten Realms Campaign Setting 3rd edition. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 183. ISBN 0-7869-1836-5.
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 Rob Heinsoo, Logan Bonner, Robert J. Schwalb (September 2008). Forgotten Realms Player's Guide. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 86. ISBN 978-0-7869-4929-8.
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 Brian R. James (May 2010). “Backdrop: Chessenta”. In Chris Youngs ed. Dungeon #178 (Wizards of the Coast), p. 73.
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 Eric L. Boyd, Eytan Bernstein (August 2006). Dragons of Faerûn. (Wizards of the Coast), pp. 10, 45. ISBN 0-7869-3923-0.
  6. 6.0 6.1 6.2 6.3 6.4 6.5 6.6 Eric L. Boyd, Eytan Bernstein (August 2006). Dragons of Faerûn. (Wizards of the Coast), pp. 71–72. ISBN 0-7869-3923-0.
  7. Rich Baker (December 2007). “Countdown to the Realms: Year of the Ageless One”. Dragon #362 (Wizards of the Coast), p. 5.
  8. Kim Mohan ed. (2015). Sword Coast Adventurer's Guide. (Wizards of the Coast), pp. 13–14. ISBN 978-0786965809.
  9. Scott Bennie (1990). Old Empires. (TSR, Inc), pp. 4, 5, 6. ISBN 0-8803-8821-8.
  10. Brian R. James and Ed Greenwood (September, 2007). The Grand History of the Realms. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 111. ISBN 978-0-7869-4731-7.
  11. Brian R. James and Ed Greenwood (September, 2007). The Grand History of the Realms. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 137. ISBN 978-0-7869-4731-7.
  12. Scott Bennie (1990). Old Empires. (TSR, Inc), p. 40. ISBN 0-8803-8821-8.
  13. 13.0 13.1 13.2 Erin M. Evans (October 4th, 2016). The Devil You Know. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 199. ISBN 978-0786965946.
  14. Scott Bennie (1990). Old Empires. (TSR, Inc), p. 55. ISBN 0-8803-8821-8.
  15. 15.0 15.1 Ed Greenwood (January 2000). Secrets of the Magister. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 76. ISBN 978-0786914302.
  16. Bruce R. Cordell, Ed Greenwood, Chris Sims (August 2008). Forgotten Realms Campaign Guide. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 101. ISBN 978-0-7869-4924-3.
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