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Niger River Map

2006-10-07 03:56:00

Niger River Map
Savalou Benin West Africa
Friday, September 22, 2006

My world is big and small; I do not see the sunlight unless I open my eyes. The days are focused on transportation, trips, travel, how to go from here to there. I need to stand back and look at my world to understand it, reacting to the world is not looking, to travel from place to place is easy, to stop myself and observe, to think, to take the time is the difficulty in travel. I have been in West Africa two times, I look at the maps of the countries continually, however, I make broad assumptions, I do not think simple enough and clear. The boundaries and gossip of countries interferes with my view.

Map of Niger River in Yellow

I have always thought the Niger River stopped in Niger; however, I am reading nonchalantly about Mali Visa, and Ghana Visa, trying to find the backpacker routes in West Africa. I read, the Niger in Mali… I think, hmm, that is funny route, which would take a big right turn.


From Guinea, Mali, Niger, Benin, and Nigeria to the Gulf of Guinea. There are two deltas; an inland one in Mali, a delta is a huge area where it swamps itself out into fingers, then again to enter the ocean in Nigeria. Deltas as I understand accumulated silt and good land for farming is deposited, plus of course an abundance of water.


This must have been one adventure of a lifetime to travel by boat from Guinea to Niger; I wonder who had done it? A plastic canoe and life can be eaten by a Hippo. Not the same as the Amazon, not as tame, the Niger has too many mysteries and unpredictable people, but still the same, it is becoming safer yearly.

- The expedition of Scottish explorer Mungo Park from 1795 to 1798 proved the Niger flowed eastward, but whether it emptied into the Nile, the Congo, an inland lake, or the Gulf of Guinea was still unknown. The Niger mystery was finally solved through expeditions headed by Scottish explorer Hugh Clapperton from 1823 to 1825 and by British explorer Richard Lemon Lander in 1830. French explorers, most importantly René-Auguste Caillié, also visited parts of the upper and middle Niger during the 19th century. - (2)

Niger River Map