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Enigmatic Boiling River from the Legend of Amazon Discovered by Scientists

Update Date: Feb 24, 2016 11:16 AM EST

Locals from Peru have talked about a river in Amazon for centuries. This river is believed to be so hot that it can burn and kill someone. The legend has it that when Spanish conquistadors went into the rainforest looking for gold. A few men that made it back alive talked about poisonous waters, snakes that ate men and a river that was naturally boiling, as reported by Science Alert

Andres Ruzo, geoscientist from Peru, said that the myth has mystified him since he was a child. However, it wasn't until he completed his project on geothermal energy in his PhD that he started to wonder if the river really did exist. When he spoke to the experts, the answer was a collective 'no'. They reasoned that even though the hot boiling rivers exist, they are coupled with volcanoes and there are no volcanoes in Amazon. So when Ruzo went home during holidays, his mother confirmed the legend saying that the river not only exists but she and his aunt had taken a swim in that river.

It sounded incredible but in 2011, Ruzo decided to take a hike in Amazon rainforest and was amazed to see the river with his own eyes. It was steaming hot, said Ruzo. He added, "When I saw this, I immediately grabbed for my thermometer. The average temperature in the river was 86 degrees Celsius, not quite boiling but definitely close enough ... It's not a legend," he said during TED Talk in his 2014 interview.

While he is not the only one who is intrigued by the river's boiling water, his research funded in part by National Geographic Young Explorers grant - is making a headway into the matter. It appears that the river is not boiling due to the sun, as it is believed to be, but due to hot springs, Earthable reported

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