Mayantuyacu -The Boiling River in Peru

Mar 1, 2016Nature



Mayantuyacu -The Boiling River in Peru

A mysterious, four-mile long river, deep in the heart of the Amazon, is so hot that it boils. The river has long been a legend in Peru, but when geoscientist Andrés Ruzo’s heard about it, he thought such a phenomenon couldn’t possibly exist because the Amazon basin is far from volcanic activity. The river boils because of fault-fed hot springs. Parts of the river are so hot that any animals that falls in boils instantly.
At 4 miles long and up to 82 feet wide and 20 feet deep, the river’s temperatures generally range from 120F degrees to 196F degrees, and in some parts it actually boils. Animals who fall in are killed quickly. And while there are hot springs in the Amazon, there is nothing like this river which is known to locals as Shanay-timpishka. “The locals think it’s so hot because of the Yacumama … a giant serpent spirit who gives birth to hot and cold waters,and is represented by a large serpent head-shaped boulder at the river’s headwaters.” Each year a smattering of tourists visit Mayantuyacu seeking the traditional healing practices of the people. But aside from a few random mentions in petroleum journals from the early 20th century, scientific documentation of the river is nil.

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