Saturday, August 15, 2015

Great Rift Valley

Executive summary by darmansjah

A 4,000-mile (6,437 km) crack that began forming 20 million years ago

Rising From the Rift

Backed by Ol Doinyo Lengai volcano, Maasai warriors stride through the grassy plains of the Serengeti in northern Tanzania. The active volcano arises from the Eastern Rift Valley.

Life on the Edge

The flora and fauna of the ancient rift region include elephant families, herds of wildebeest, gelada baboons, and red algae in the super-saline waters of Lake Natron.

EAST AFRICA Visitors to Kenya know the Great Rift as the breathtaking escarpment they pass on safari. Few realize it is actually continent apart. Along nearly 4,000 miles (6,437 km) from the Red Sea to Mozambique, enormous cracks have opened up, as much as a mile (1,6 km) deep and 5o miles (80 km) across. In central Africa the rift has two branches: The Eastern Rift Valley bisects Kenya, skirting Mount Killimanjaro and the Serengeti Plain in Tanzania; the Western Rift Valley cleaves the heart of the continent. The Great Rift began to open 20 million years ago, and the process continues. Experts say we could be witnessing the first stages in the development of a new ocean basin

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