For many centuries, Peruvian inhabitants are talking about a mysterious boiling river in the Amazon that burns so hot. Even someone can kill in this boiling water. The river flowing deep in the Amazon rainforest, in Mayantuyacu, Peru calls it “Shanay-timpishka” which translates to “boiled with the heat of the sun.”
The local’s folks have a strong belief that boiling water is released by a giant serpent (Yacumama) “Mother of Waters” a large serpent head-shaped boulder at the river’s headwaters. The boiling river is 6 meters deep and 25 meters wide, but only 6.4 km long. The water temperature varies from 50 to 90 degrees centigrade, and a little portion is touching 100 degrees, which is hot enough to cause third-degree burns within a second.
Therefore, ill-fated animals have fallen into the river and got killed. Every year, a lot of tourists visit Mayantuyacu to experience the traditional medicinal practices of the Ashaninka people. Many believe, this natural wonder has managed to elude widespread notice for more than 75 years. However, Geologists dismissed the point and argued that it’d have been taking a massive amount of geothermal heat to boil even a small section of the river, as the Amazon basin lies only 400 miles from the nearest active volcano. According to the Spanish, conquistadors mistakenly ventured into the rainforest in search of gold. They say, man-eating snakes and a river that boiled from below.
Andres Ruzo, a geological scientist, is so curious since his childhood. The Peruvian legend has the myth and had fascinated, whether the river could actually be real or not? His unanimous opinion gives the answer “NO”, the boiling river actually associated with hot volcanoes of the country. Therefore, in 2011 Ruzo decided to start his journey to see the boiling river, and he took the chance and hiked into the Amazon rainforest with his aunt, and finally saw the notorious river with his own eyes.
Hence, much to his disbelief, the river was steam hot. He took the thermometer to measure the temperature, which was 86 degrees Celsius. The water was not quite boiling, but really close enough to boiling. Furthermore, the river was 700 km from the closest volcanic system, and the temperature didn’t make any sense. In fact, the river was the only such type anywhere in the world. Ruzo, spent 5 years investigation of the river, its surrounding ecosystem, and its water in the lab, in order to figure out what actually makes him boil.
Therefore, his dedication, passion, and curiosity finally reveal some of its secrets, when it turns out, it is not the Sun that boils the water, but fault-fed hot springs. He said, imagine earth like a human body, with fault lines and cracks running through it like arteries. These ‘Earth arteries’ are filled with hot water, and when they come to the surface, we see geothermal manifestations – like the boiling river.
Moreover, chemical analysis has disclosed that the water in the river originally fell as rain. Therefore, Ruzo now assumes that this happens far upstream – maybe as far away as in the Andes – and along its journey seeps down into the ground, where it’s heated up by Earth’s geothermal energy. It eventually emerges in the Amazon, at the boiling river.
The system is part of a massive hydrothermal system, the likes of which haven’t been seen anywhere else on the planet. He has also discovered some new species that are able to survive in boiling water. The animals can no longer swim, and water fills their mouths and lungs, causing them to be cooked from the inside out.
However, people do actually swim in the Boiling River, but only after heavy rainfalls when it’s diluted with cold water. More often, the water is used to make tea and for cooking. So, he strongly believes the river is a natural wonder, and he released a book named “The Boiling River on his Adventure”.