Maipo (river)

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Coordinates: 33°36′40″S 71°37′50″W / 33.61111°S 71.63056°W / -33.61111; -71.63056
The Maipo river
The Maipo river
Country Chile
Regions Santiago Metropolitan Region, Valparaíso
Provinces Cordillera, Maipo, Talagante, Melipilla, San Antonio
Comunas San José de Maipo, Puente Alto, Buin, Melipilla, San Antonio
 - left Clarillo
 - right Yeso, Colorado, Mapocho
City Melipilla
Source Los Nacimientos
 - location Maipo volcano, Cordillera province, Chile
 - elevation 3,135 m (10,285 ft)
 - coordinates 34°13′50″S 69°51′20″W / 34.23056°S 69.85556°W / -34.23056; -69.85556
Mouth Pacific Ocean
 - location Llolleo, San Antonio province, Valparaíso, Chile
 - elevation m (0 ft)
 - coordinates 33°36′40″S 71°37′50″W / 33.61111°S 71.63056°W / -33.61111; -71.63056
Length 250 km (155 mi)
Basin 15,304 km² (5,909 sq mi)
Discharge for La Obra
 - average 92.3 /s (3,260 cu ft/s)
Map of the Maipo river
Map of the Maipo river
Wikimedia Commons: Aconcagua River

The Maipo is a river that flows from east to west through the Santiago Metropolitan and the Valparaíso regions in central Chile. It flows just south ot the national capital, Santiago, and ends in the Pacific Ocean.

The Maipo river is one of the main river of Chile an is an important source of irrigation and potable water for the region.

Geography[change | change source]

The Maipo river has a length of 250 km (155 mi), and a drainage basin with an area of approximately 15,304 km2 (5,909 sq mi).[1]

Course[change | change source]

The Maipo river starts on the Andes, in the place called Los Nacimientos, on the side of the Maipo volcano, in the San José de Maipo commune (Santiago Metropolitan Region), at an elevation of about 3,135 m (10,285 ft).

From its start, the river flows to the northwest through the Cajón del Maipo, a canyon; the El Volcán and Yeso rivers join the Maio before San José de Maipo near the town of San Gabriel and as right tributaries. After the city of San José de Maipo the river is joined, also as a right tributary, by the Colorado river and then turns to the southwest.

After a total of about 110 km (68 mi), Maipo river leaves the Andes to the south of Puente Alto, still at near 800 m (2,625 ft) of altitude above sea level, and gets into the Maipo valley. Near Talagante, after flowing through the city of Santiago, the Mapocho river joins, as a right tributary, the Maipo river.

After crossing the coastal mountains, the Maipo gets to the town of Llolleo, just south of the port city of San Antonio, where it flows into the Pacific Ocean.

Main tributaries[change | change source]

Most of the tributaries of the Maipo river join:

Uses[change | change source]

In the upper part, the Maipo is used to produce hydroelectricity. The Cajón del Maipo is a popular tourist region, mainly for water sports like rafting.

In the Maipo valley, grapes are produced with the water of the river and the valley is a very important wine region.

Gallery[change | change source]

Related pages[change | change source]

References[change | change source]

  1. "Cuenca del río Maipo" (PDF) (in Spanish). Ministerio de Obras Públicas - Dirección General de Aguas. Julio 2004. Retrieved 24 September 2016. Check date values in: |date= (help)

Other websites[change | change source]