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Dam/Lake Cahora Bassa Dam

ID: w143720 View large map

Located in Mozambique :: Mozambique
Category: Attraction :: Dam/Lake

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Cahora Bassa (Also mistakenly spelt Cabora Bassa) is an arch dam and hydroelectric construction in the Zambezi River, Mozambique, about 125 km northwest of Tete.

It is 171 m high 303 m wide at the crest and has a volume of fifty two thousand million cubic metres - double the total amount of water stored in South Africa. The lake is Africa's fourth-largest in terms of water surface.

Construction started in the late 1960s and the dam began to fill in December 1974. The wall was built in a gorge called Kebrabasse (which means 'where the work cannot go on'). There are 5 generators at the dam wall, producing 2,075 MW of power. Most of this electricity is sold to nearby South Africa.

Cahorra Bassa at 270 km long is roughly the same size as Kariba, but remains virtually unfished, having been protected first by a civil war and now by its remoteness. From the wall the first 30 km lies within a deep gorge before opening out into the main lake. As the surrounding mountains offer protection from strong winds, most fishing is done within this gorge and the various shallower surrounding bays.

A considerable kapenta fishery has developed in the reservoir. Annual catch of kapenta in the Cahora Bassa dam in 2003 exceeded 10 thousand tons. Fishing is excellent and Tigerfish up to 14 kg have been caught. The lake also contains various bream species, plus catfish and the massive vundu.

Other activities include, kayaking, exploring the dam by boat and fly fishing. It is widely believed that there is a breeding colony of Zambezi Shark trapped inside the dam, Locals have reported sightings (and attacks) by sharks, but no hard evidence of this is available. Cahora Bassa (Also mistakenly spelt Cabora Bassa) is an arch dam and hydroelectric construction in the Zambezi River, Mozambique, about 125 km northwest of Tete.

It is 171 m high 303 m wide at the crest and has a volume of fifty two thousand million cubic metres - double the total amount of water stored in South Africa. The lake is Africa's fourth-largest in terms of water surface. Construction started in the late 1960s and the dam began to fill in December 1974. The wall was built in a gorge called Kebrabasse (which means 'where the work cannot go on'). There are 5 generators at the dam wall, producing 2,075 MW of power.

Most of this electricity is sold to nearby South Africa. Cahorra Bassa at 270 km long is roughly the same size as Kariba, but remains virtually unfished, having been protected first by a civil war and now by its remoteness.

From the wall the first 30 km lies within a deep gorge before opening out into the main lake. As the surrounding mountains offer protection from strong winds, most fishing is done within this gorge and the various shallower surrounding bays.

A considerable kapenta fishery has developed in the reservoir. Annual catch of kapenta in the Cahora Bassa dam in 2003 exceeded 10 thousand tons. Fishing is excellent and Tigerfish up to 14 kg have been caught. The lake also contains various bream species, plus catfish and the massive vundu.

Contact [ correction ]
Address :  Tete Province, Mozambique

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