Mount Roraima in South America

Mount Roraima

Mount Roraima : Monte Roraima , also known as Tepuy Roraima and Cerro Roraima; Portuguese: Monte Roraima is the highest of the Pakaraima chain of tepui plateau in South America.


First described by the English explorer Sir Walter Raleigh in 1596, its 31 km2 summit area[ is defended on all sides by tall cliffs rising 400 metres (1,300 ft). The mountain also serves as the triple border point of Venezuela, Brazil and Guyana.

Mount Roraima lies on the Guiana Shield in the southeastern corner of Venezuela's 30,000 square kilometres (12,000 sq mi) Canaima National Park forming the highest peak of Guyana's Highland Range.

Many of the species found on Roraima are unique to the plateau. Plants such as pitcher plants (Heliamphora), Campanula (a bellflower), and the rare Rapatea heather are commonly found on the escarpment and summit. It rains almost every day of the year. Almost the entire surface of the summit is bare sandstone, with only a few bushes (Bonnetia roraimœ) and algae present. "low scanty and bristling vegetation" is also found in the small, sandy marshes that intersperse the rocky summit. Most of the nutrients that are present in the soil are washed away by torrents that cascade over the edge, forming some of the highest waterfalls in the world.

Since long before the arrival of European explorers, the mountain has held a special significance for the indigenous people of the region, and it is central to many of their myths and legends. The Pemon and Kapon natives of the Gran Sabana see Mount Roraima as the stump of a mighty tree that once held all the fruits and tuberous vegetables in the world. Felled by Makunaima, their mythical trickster, the tree crashed to the ground, unleashing a terrible flood.
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