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Chubut River

The Chubut River is a river in Patagonia, Southern Argentina. Its name derives from the Tehuelche word chupat, meaning "transparent", their description of the river. As this word is similar to the Spanish word chupar , the river's name was bowdlerized — adjusted for public decorum. The Welsh name "Afon Camwy" means the "twisting river"

The river flows through Chubut Province for approximately 800 kilometres to reach the Atlantic Ocean at Engano Bay near Rawson. The main arm of the Chubut originates in Carreras at the Andes in Rio Negro Province, although its basin covers a large area of the western Andean foothills between Bariloche and Esquel. It is also fed by the Chico River. The many branches join some distance before the small town of Piedra Parada, where the terrain becomes the flat plain characteristic of Argentine Patagonia. It flows east and passes by the town of Paso del Sapo where it turns south east and through relatively unpopulated central Chubut. It meets the major Highway 25 and turns east once again.

Some 120 km west of Trelew, the river has been dammed. The dam was planned and directed, in 1943, by engineer Antonio Domingo Pronsato; the work was inaugurated on 19 April 1963. It was named after the palaeontologist Florentino Ameghino. The artificial lake covers 70 square kilometres and the 255 m long dam is made of concrete. The plant uses a 56 m high waterfall with a flow of 150 m/s and three turbines. It provides energy to Pico Truncado, Caleta Olivia, Comodoro Rivadavia and the lower Chubut Valley.

The river is generally shallow and its water flow can vary from 4 to 30 m/s between drought and flood. This difference in level and consequent flooding made the lands alongside it fertile and important for agriculture. The river is a popular trout fishing destination, but a license is needed to practice this sport in its waters.

In the 19th century, Welsh people arrived in Chubut and established a Welsh colony ("Gwladfa Gymraeg"/"Colonia Gales") in the valley of the Chubut river. Today, the Welsh language and Welsh tea houses are common within several towns, many of which have Welsh names such as Dolavon, Trelew, etc.

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This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article Chubut River

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