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Top 5 Most Powerful Rivers in the World


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When you think of a river, the last thing you think about is probably how strong its water really is. You are more than likely to think about calm flowing water that brushes over stones at the bottom of the river. Whatever you think about, it's definitely not how powerful the river is.

5. Brahmaputra River

The Brahmaputra River is located in Bahaduradbad, Bangladesh. It starts in southwestern Tibet, goes through the Himalayas, the Assam Valley, and then through Bangladesh. The Brahmaputra is about 1,800 miles long and is mostly used for transportation as well as irrigation. While most of this river is navigable, some parts are prone to catastrophic flooding in the spring once the snow of the Himalayans melt. This river is also one of the few that is known to have something called a tidal bare. This means that incoming tides form waves that travel up the river against the direction of the current. This is what researchers call a true tidal wave. This makes the Brahmaputra that much stronger.

4. Yangtze River

The Yangtze River is the longest river in Asia as well as in China. It is the 3rd largest in the world. The river stretches to about 3,964 miles and flows through East China Sea in Shanghai. The Yangtze is known for its flooding, and dams that have been built to prevent water from flowing outside of the river's banks have proven to be useless. Researchers have realized that the river actually has three different types of floods and that its tides are much too strong during some seasons to prevent water from overflowing. Many use the river for electricity and water transport, but they often, if not always have to live in the fear of their towns being flooded.

3. Orinoco River

The Orinoco River is one of the longest in South America. In fact, it is the 3rd longest in South America. The river is 1,330 miles long and flows through Colombia and Venezuela. It begins at the Delgago Chalbaud Mountain. Once the river passes the forested terrain and waterfalls, it slows. However, the waterfalls become rapids which have proven to be extremely difficult to navigate, even though during this time the river is downstream. Eventually the river dumps into the Atlantic Ocean. The river also experiences coastal upwelling year-round, which often poses a threat for those who live close to the river.

2. Congo River

You might know the Congo River as the Zaire. Whichever name you are familiar with, this river is the largest in Western Central Africa. At 2,922 miles, the Congo is the second longest river in Africa. This river is also Africa's most powerful river. Even though the Congo starts off as a peaceful river, especially near Lake Tanganyika, it eventually begins to widen and also picks up speed during this time. Eventually the water passes through the “Gates of Hell, " which is a 75-mile long canyon that presents rapids that are impassable. At the Upper Congo, the river ends, but has a 60 mile stretch of rapids that make it dangerous and powerful.

1. Amazon River

The Amazon is the largest river in the world when looking at its volume. It is located in South America, and because it is so large, it can count for at least 1/5 of the world's complete river flow. This river is so powerful and so big that there aren't any points along the river that can be crossed by a bridge. The river has an extremely powerful discharge at the mouth which can release as much as eight trillion gallons of water each day. The river is said to be about 150 ft.deep, so if you're thinking about going for a swim in the Amazon, think again!

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