For more than 500 years, scientists from around the world have tried to decipher the unique geological origin of Mount Roraima, in southern Venezuela. In addition to rising almost three thousand meters above sea level, the mountain has an unnatural morphology, which appears to have been cut with knives from the precision of its angles.
Mount Roraima - or Roraima tepui, as it is known locally - is located southeast of Venezuela's Canaima National Park. This rock formation is the largest of its kind in all of South America, and is part of the Pakaraima mountain range. For more than 5 centuries, it has intrigued historians, geologists and other scientists for being a mountain without a tip.
In the entire world, no “flat-headed” mountain has been found to match it. The top of Mount Roraima is completely horizontal, and occupies an area of more than 30 square kilometers, surrounded by waterfalls, cliffs and other uncommon geographical features in the world. Seen in this way, it could be considered as an island in the heights.
In addition to having a unique rock formation, Mount Roraima is home to a great diversity of endemic plant and animal species. Geologists and biologists from around the world estimate that it hides some of the species that science has no record, since there are spaces in the mountain that are still unexplored.
Mount Roraima is thought to have been the product of a major earthquake in the past. However, its origin is not certain, since geological features that were created in similar ways do not have that shape. This has led scientists to think that it may be the oldest rock formation on Earth.
Field research is difficult, as access to virgin areas is difficult: there is no direct path to Mount Roraima. On the contrary, it has to be reached by climbing other mountains of the Pakaraima chain. Otherwise, you can only enter by helicopter. Those who have tried alternative routes have lost their lives, requiring a special permit from the local authorities. (Text and photos: National Geographic)