El Cerro del Aripo
|El Cerro del Aripo|
|Elevation||940 m (3,080 ft) |
|Listing||Country high point|
|Location||Trinidad and Tobago|
|Parent range||Northern Range|
El Cerro del Aripo, at 940 metres (3,084 ft), is the highest point in the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago. It is part of the Aripo Massif and is located in the Northern Range on the island of Trinidad, northeast of the town of Arima.
El Cerro del Aripo lies on the border of the St.George and St.Andrew Counties in the biodiverse Northern Range. Elfin woodland and cloud forest is found on the peak's summit, due to high levels of rainfall and winds. Elfin woodland is also found on the summit of the nation's second highest peak, El Tucuche.
El Cerro del Aripo is home to the golden treefrog, only found in the highest peaks in Trinidad and the Paria Peninsula, Venezuela . The constant cloud cover, prevailing winds and Cloud Forest or Elfin Woodland provides a safe habitat for the elusive frog. It inhabits the moist bromeliads found on the summit. Other animals including the elusive ocelot, red brocket deer and howler monkey.
The mountain lies in the Aripo and Guanapo river valleys. It forms the headwaters of the Caroni River's largest tributary. There are biodiverse caves such as the Lopinot Cave and Aripo Cave. The Aripo Cave is home to a large oilbird colony, and features stunning stalactite and stalagmite formations.There are many rivers and gorges such as the Guanapo river gorge and Aripo river. These all contribute to the Caroni River.
El Cerro del Aripo is accessible for hikers, and is located near the world-famous Asa Wright Nature Centre. The centre is a bird-watching hotspot and is one of the most biodiverse areas in the West Indies and over 400 species of birds can be viewed from there.
Geography and climate
Unlike many of Trinidad's mountain peaks, El Cerro del Aripo has a flat summit, and unlike El Tucuche, no views are available. However, the mountain contains a diverse array of wildlife. Animals such as the howler monkey and elusive ocelot (found nowhere else in the Caribbean) can be found. Below the mountain is the world-famous Asa Wright Nature Centre, one of the most biodiverse areas in the West Indies. Over 200 species of birds can be viewed from there.
El Cerro del Aripo stands as the highest elevation in the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago. The mountain lies in the Aripo and Guanapo river valleys. The main tributary of the large Caroni River flows from the mountain, out of the Northern Range and into the densely populated Caroni Plains.
Geographical formations include the Lopinot Cave and Aripo Cave, which is home to an oilbird colony and the Guanapo river gorges, which features some of the Caribbean's most rugged terrain and deep river gorges.
Its climate is subtropical. Due to constant fog and cloud cover, temperature may decrease significantly at night compared to the lowlands and fertile Caroni plains
- Dominique De-Light, Polly Thomas: The Rough Guide to Trinidad and Tobago. Rough Guides 2001, ISBN 1-85828-747-2, p. 167