About us!

We are Amisadai and Louisa Monger (aged 15 and 13). In 2010, we moved to Tanzania in Africa - look at the map below to see if you can find it! We hope you will enjoy reading about our adventures and looking at our photos! Please don't forget to send us a message too!

Monday, 20 June 2016

Oldupai Gorge (Part 2)

Amisadai's Year 7 School Trip: Part 2

On day three of our Year 7 School Trip, we set off early from Ngorongoro to go to Oldupai Gorge, which was about an hour’s drive away from Nyani Campsite.
Oldupai Gorge
Shortly after we arrived, a man named Marafu gave us a lecture about Oldupai Gorge, an archaeological site, measuring about 20.2 square kilometres. Oldupai’s unique feature is that it is the only place in the world which contains remains of “homo habilis”, which evolutionists believe is an early forerunner of human beings. The gorge has three other discoveries for which it is famous:
  • The discovery of stone tools
  • The discovery of animal bones and fossils
  • The discovery of early human bones and fossils
Also discovered at Oldupai were the Laoteli footprints preserved in volcanic tuff. They were discovered in 1977 and believed to be 3.6 million years old and are said to be most important discovery of the history of human palaeontology.

Oldupai Gorge was first reported during the year 1911 by a German archaeologist named Wilhelm Catwinkle. Research was started in 1913 by the Germans. But the team failed to continue their research due to the First World War. After the First World War, the Germans lost their colony and further research was started by Louis and Mary Leakey, who were English. (Interestingly, their son Richard Leakey, who is 72 and Head of Wildlife Conservation in Kenya, has been in the news recently with all the wildlife poaching). Today there are three different groups of researchers from Spain, USA and Tanzania.
People believe that 2 million years ago there was a lake that attracted many living creatures such as birds, animals, reptiles, insects and fish. The circumference of the lake is thought to be 5 to 8 km wide. But due to the volcanic eruption of Mount Olmot, the lake disappeared. When the eruption occurred, it killed many of the creatures. The volcanic urge contained many minerals such as phosphorus, sodium, potassium and silicate. Those minerals fossilized the bones. Oldupai Gorge was then naturally formed due to water erosion.
Oldupai Gorge has 5 geological layers which are:
  • Layer 1: contains basalt and volcanic ash. Dated 2 million years ago
  • Layer 2: contains volcanic ash. Dated 1.75 million years ago
  • Layer 3: contains red soil (iron oxide). Dated 1.2million years ago
  • Layer 4: contains volcanic ash. Dated 800,000 years ago (this is the layer that caused the lake to disappear)
  • Layer 5: contains magma. Dated 150,000 years ago
Five layers seen in the gorge
In the research of the Gorge, scientists identified what they believe are four different species of Hominid discovered at Oldupai:
  • Australopithecus Bosei/ zinjanthropus
  • Homo habilis
  • Homo Erectus
  • Homo Sapiens

After spending the morning at Oldupai Gorge, we went to see “shifting sand,” not far from the Gorge. The shifting sand is greyish black sand which is moving all the time. It moves 100m in 6 years! It was burning hot to walk on and was very fine and smooth. But after a quick walk about on the sand, we had to leave and drive off very quickly because the Masai came with their spears and didn’t want us to be there! They even threw their spears at the car as we drove off!

I will give you the final instalment of our trip on the next blog post!


  1. My Oldpal George isn't that old! Lol Papaxx

  2. That place seems familiar mhhhhhhh