One of the farthest places from Michigan that I have lived for over a month is Venezuela. Though I was born in Winfield, Illinois, I grew up and lived in Venezuela for most of my life. My parents were missionaries in Puerto Ordaz, located in the northeast, and Caracas, the capital, for fifteen years (from 1988-2003). My grandparents, now retired, were missionaries in Venezuela for forty years. In 2004, when I was eleven years old, I went to my first American school here in Grand Rapids. After a year of raising support, my family moved to Italy. I repeated fifth grade, and finished middle school at an International school in Mestre, Italy. After that, for high school I attended a boarding school in southern Germany. Right now, my parents and younger brothers are at home in Italy. Even though Italy is the country that is farther away from Michigan, I decided to write about five significant geological features in Venezuela, and the geologic history and current geology.
First of all, one of South America’s greatest geological features is the Andes Mountains. The Andes are a major mountain range in Venezuela. The Andes mountain range is the longest mountain range in the world. To be specific, the mountain range is 4,500 miles long and 500 miles wide (Andes). The Andes stretch along the west coast of South America passing through several countries including Venezuela, Columbia, Ecuador, Peru Bolivia, Chile and Argentina. The Andes’ average elevation is 13,000 feet. One might not think this but in some places in the Andes Mountains there is snow and even glaciers. Mount Aconcagua, in Argentina, is the highest elevation of the Andes, at 22,841 feet above sea level. The Himalaya Mountains are the only other mountains that are taller than the Andes (Andes). Plate tectonics formed the Andes Mountains. The Nazca plate and part of the Atlantic plate are the two plates that have been subducting for many years (Mountains).
The major river in Venezuela is the Rio Orinoco. It is one of South America’s longest rivers. It flows about 1,600 miles in length, and interestingly enough, the Rio Orinoco makes part of the Venezuela-Columbia border (Acebes). The Rio Orinoco begins in southern Venezuela near the Brazilian border and curves northeasterly across Venezuela through a large marshy delta and into the Atlantic Ocean. The Apure River and the Amazon rivers are its main tributaries. The Orinoco’s drainage basin covers about 340,000 square miles (Acebes). In annual water flow, the only two rivers that exceed Rio Orinoco are the Amazon and the Congo (Orinoco). The Rio Orinoco runs through savannas and tropical rain forests (Orinoco).
Lago Maracaibo is one of the most impressive lakes and Venezuela major lake. It is the largest lake on the South American continent, and one of the planet's oldest bodies of water. Geologists have given reports showing that Lago Maracaibo is one of the world’s most ancient lakes. According to researchers, Lago Maracaibo was formed...