Great Rift Valley, Kenya

 Great Rift Valley, Kenya

The Copernicus Sentinel-2 mission takes us over part of the Great Rift Valley, Kenya.

This valley is part of the Gregory Rift, an eastern branch of the East African Rift, which is being caused by the separation of the Somali plate from the Nubian plate. Major tectonic and volcanic activity have shaped the distinctive landscape of the Great Rift Valley which runs through Kenya from north to south.

The dramatic landscape contains the Cherangani Hills and forests to the west, a chain of volcanoes, of which some are still active, escarpments and jewel-like lakes.

Lake Baringo, one of the most northern of the Kenyan Rift Valley lakes, is visible at the top of the image. With a surface area of 130 sq km and an elevation of around 970 m, the lake has an average depth of around 5 m and it is one of the two freshwater lakes in the Rift Valley – the other being Lake Naivasha (not visible).

This lake has no visible outlet; its waters are thought to seep into lavas at its northern end – where the rocky shore contrasts with the alluvial flat on its southern border.

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