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Huallaga River



The Huallaga River (also known as Guallaga and Rio de los Motilones) is the main affluent of the Maranon River's . It is born on the slopes of the Andes, north-east from the knot of Pasco, located in the centre of Peru, and joins the Maranon before the latter reaches the Ucayali River to form the Amazon.

For nearly its entire length it is an impetuous torrent running through a succession of gorges. It has forty-two rapids, and it crosses the Andes, forming the Pongo de Aguirre (pongo means "door" in Quechua). To this point, 140 miles from the Amazon, the Huallaga can be ascended by larger river boats (lanchas) to the port city of Yurimaguas, Loreto.

The Huallaga is divided in two, before and after it passes the city of Juanjui: the Alto Huallaga (Upper Huallaga) and the Bajo Huallaga (Lower Huallaga), because the terrain changes from the slopes of the Andes to the swamps of the Amazon rainforest. Its main affluents are the Monzon, Mayo, Biabo, Abiseo and Tocache rivers. Coca is grown in most of those valleys, and they are also exposed to periodic floods.

Between the Huallaga and the Ucayali lies the famous "Pampa del Sacramento," a level region of stoneless alluvial lands covered with thick, dark forests, first entered by Christian missionaries in 1726. It is about 300 miles long, from north to south, and varies in width from 40 to 100 metres. Many streams, navigable for canoes, penetrate this region from the Ucayali and the Huallaga. In addition to peasants, it is still occupied by many indigenous communities, such as the Cocama-Cocamilla.

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


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