Cenote Angelita - River under the sea? A brief explanation!

Monday, December 26, 2011.
Cenote Angelita - River under the sea A brief explanation!

I tried to gather some information about cenote Angelita Before entering into the Cenote Angelita, we must understand the meaning of "cenote". The word "Cenote" is derived from the Mayan word "D'zonot" which means "a pit / underground cave which has water". While the "Angelita" means 



"little angel". So Cenote Angelita means "Cave of Little Angel".
The term cenote is used to refer to the cave / hole in the Yucatan peninsula, Mexico. In addition to Cenote Angelita, in the Yucatan peninsula, there are other cenote cenote-like Aktun Ha Cenote, Cenote Calavera, Cenote Chac Mool and others. Formation of the caves are connected with the sea and formed about 6,500 years ago.



These cenotes have a very old history. The Mayans used to use it to travel to another city. But only in the 20th century when diving and cave exploration became popular, this re-cenote cenote-interest.
Cenote Angelita we are talking about is located approximately 17 kilometers from Tulum. It has a hole diameter of about 30 meters with a depth of about 60 meters. Cenote is located in dense forest areas that have a diversity of flora and fauna is quite rich. Even the Jaguars also live in this forest.
 

Because it is actually less accurate if called Cenote Angelita as a river on the seabed. Cenote Angelita is actually a watery cave in the jungle, not at sea, although the water was connected with the sea.
If we dive into the Cenote Angelita, we will find fresh water at a depth of 30 meters first, followed by salt water at a depth of 60 meters. At that depth we can see the river and the trees at the bottom.
Well, I will now discuss three characteristics of this cenote which confuses many people, namely:

    
Why is salt water and fresh water can not mix?
    
How can there be an underwater river?
    
How trees can live in water?
Saltwater and freshwater 



In his description of the Cenote Angelita, Anatoly Beloschin, a professional photographer says:

"We are 30 meters deep, fresh water, then 60 meters deep - salty water and under me I see a river, island and fallen leaves .."
"At a depth of 30 feet, freshwater, and at a depth of 60 meters, salt water, and below I saw a river, islands and the leaves are falling."


From this description, we can conclude that the fresh water above salt water. How can salt water and fresh water do not mix?
The answer is because of a phenomenon called Halocline.
Halocline is a vertical zone in the ocean where salinity changes rapidly in line with changes in depth. Changes in salinity affect the density of water so that the zone is then serves as a wall of separation between saltwater and freshwater.


Salt water has greater density than fresh water. This makes it has a specific gravity which is also greater. Because it is natural that the fresh water above salt water. When both types of water are met, he will make halocline layer that serves a separators between them. This event does not occur in all parts of the coast or at sea, but quite common in the caves are connected to the sea water as cenote.
The border between saltwater and freshwater (Halocline) at Cenote Angelita is at a depth of about 33
meters. In case this cenote, fresh surface water comes from rain water.
 



If you want more details, you can make yourself at home halocline. The trick, put salt water into a glass until half-filled glasses. Then, put the sponge on the water. After that, pour fresh water slowly into the glass. Then the halocline layer will be created so that incoming fresh water does not mix with the salty water underneath.
 



The phenomenon of separate freshwater to salt water is actually not new. 2,000 years ago, a Roman geographer named Strabo wrote about the inhabitants of Latakia, the western Syrians, who pedaled his boat about 4 kilometers away from the beach and then dive by bringing the water from the goatskin bag and took fresh water from it for drinking water supply for the city them. They know exactly the place where fresh water gathered in the sea. Today, divers can also do the same thing on many beaches in the world. 

 

River under the sea 

In the photo we can see, Cenote Angelita seem to have a river at the bottom. If true, of course, would be very confusing!




But the river is actually just an illusion. The most appropriate description for the call, not a river, but the fog / cloud, because the layer that looks like a river that is a layer of Hydrogen Sulfide. These layers form a fog / clouds that create the illusion of the river.
Not much can dive to depths of this because there are in the bottom layer Angelita cenote, which is at a depth of about 60 meters.
 



Hydrogen Sulfide layer is formed by trees or decaying organisms in the bottom of the cenote. Therefore this layer has an unpleasant smell, like rotten eggs (Maybe some of you also know that we also released the gas when we pass gas). In addition to the activities bacterial decomposition, the gas can also be produced by volcanic activity. In high levels, the gas is harmless to humans because it can interfere with some systems in the human body.

Tree under the sea

I got a lot of these questions and indeed this is an interesting question. From the photo above, we can see if a tree at the bottom of Cenote Angelita is similar to the existing trees on the land. We know that trees need sunlight for photosynthesis. So how can they live on base and in the dark water?
The answer to this question is actually very simple: There are no trees that live in the bottom of the cenote!
 

Most of us misinterpreted the phrase Anatoly Beloschin. Anatoly said:
"We are 30 meters deep, fresh water, then 60 meters deep - salty water and under me I see a river, island and fallen leaves ..."
"At a depth of 30 feet, freshwater, and at a depth of 60 meters, salt water, and below I saw a river, islands and the leaves are falling."




He just said if he saw the leaves that fall.
This is clearly seen from the photographs he took when the trunks of trees that are dead trees and leaves in question is the leaves that littered the bottom of the cenote. Anatoly never said seeing the 

tree of life in the bottom of the cenote.
I also could not find any one source as saying there is a tree of life in the cenote Angelita. Moreover, if there is a tree of life, Anatoly why not take a picture?
 

Then the question, where they come from tree trunks and leaves them?
The answer is because it is located in the center of Cenote Forest. Of course natural that there are tree trunks and leaves that fall into the bottom cenote. 


hopefully this post useful

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