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Item #: BK1191
UGANDA RWENZORI: A RANGE OF IMAGES [RUWENZORI] SIGNED by David Pluth 1996
By Pluth, David
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1996, 1st edition. 128 pp, many color photos. The best modern book on the Ruwenzori Mountains of Uganda. Large format hardcover, DJ, New condition. SIGNED by David Pluth.

The Ruwenzori Range, now officially called Rwenzori Mountains (the spelling having been changed in about 1980 to conform more closely with the local tribal name) is a small but spectacular mountain range of central Africa, often referred to as Mt. Rwenzori, located on the border between Uganda and Congo, with heights of up to 5,109 m (16,761 ft). The highest Rwenzoris are permanently snow-capped, and they, along with Mount Kilimanjaro and Mount Kenya, are the only such in Africa. The Ruwenzoris are often identified with the 'Mountains of the Moon' mentioned by Ptolemy, but the descriptions are too vague to make this definite.

The mountains formed as a result of uplift on the flanks of theAlbertine (western) Rift of the East African Rift, the African part ofthe Great Rift Valley.

The range is about 120 km (75 mi) long and 65 km (40 mi) wide. It consists of six massifs separated by deep gorges: Mount Baker, Mount Emin, Mount Gessi, Mount Luigi di Savoia, Mount Speke, and Mount Stanley. Mount Stanley is the largest and has several subsidiary summits, with Mount Margheritabeing the highest point. The rock is metamorphic, and the mountains arebelieved to have been tilted and squeezed upwards by plate movement.They are in an extremely humid area, and frequently enveloped in clouds.

The Ruwenzori are known for their vegetation, ranging from tropical rainforest through alpine meadows to snow; and for their animal population, including forest elephants, several primate species and many endemic birds. One zone is known for its six metre high heather covered in moss, another for its three metre blue lobelias. Most of the range is now a World Heritage Site and is covered jointly by The Rwenzori Mountains National Park in Uganda and the Parc National des Virunga in Congo.

In 1906 the Rwenzori had 43 named glaciers distributed over 6mountains with a total area of 7.5 sq. km., about half the totalglacier area in Africa. Now (2005) less than half of these survive, ononly 3 mountains, with an area of about 1.5 sq.km.

The first European sighting of the Ruwenzori was by the expedition of Henry Morton Stanley in 1889 (the aforementioned clouds are considered to explain why two decades of previous explorers had not seen them). On June 7, the expedition's second-in-command and its military commander, William Stairs, climbed to 10,677 feet, the first non-African ever to climb in the range. The first ascent to the summit was made by the Duke of the Abruzzi in 1906.


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