Thursday, 7 October 2010
Heaven In Hell's Valley
The Japanese Macaque is the most northerly-living non-human primate, living in mountainous areas of Honshū, Japan. It survives winter temperatures below -15 °C (5° F), and is perhaps most famous for the amount of time it spends relaxing in naturally heated volcanic hot springs. The Yokoyu River valley, which flows down from Shiga Kogen is at an elevation of 850 meters, the area is called "Hell's Valley" due to the steep cliffs and hot water steaming out from the earth's surface. It's a fairly harsh environment in winter with snow on the ground for a third of the year, but it is also a paradise for the couple of hundred monkeys that live there.