Tanzania: Ngorongoro Crater


Millions of years ago, Ngorongoro was an active volcano, possibly higher than Mt. Kilimanjaro. When it became extinct, the cone collapsed and formed the crater that is 102 square miles, 10 miles wide  and 2,000 feet deep.   There is a rain forest covered in fog on the east side and desert on the west.  Masai live and graze cattle there and the cowbells sound like wind chimes as they walk up and down the paths on the sides of the crater. Rangers patrol the crater with guns to protect the wildlife and the endangered black rhino has rebounded from 4 to 24. Lions sleep on their backs with paws in the air in the open grassland and hippos roll and blow in the shallow ponds.