19-Oct-2006 -- Our Explore! tour of the wilds of northern Madagascar soon became a tour of the country's Confluences. No sooner had my merry band conquered 14S 50E then crazed chants of "13-49" filled the air! On close inspection of the map I realized there could be something in it as our intended camping location in a few days' time appeared eerily close to the Confluence.
The Ankarana massif is a huge block of limestone, 18 by 5 miles in size. Erosion has produced a razor sharp surface known as 'tsingy', a phenomenon associated with, but not unique to Madagascar. The erosion has also created huge canyons and extensive cave networks leaving pockets of wildlife nestling in magical sunken forests. After spending 2 days exploring the eastern side of the park, we crossed over to the little visited southwestern corner to access the crocodile caves.
After taking lunch at 'Camping Americain', the Confluence was only 7 km away. Our crocodile caves bush camp was in the same direction and the track we took actually went within 80 meters of the Confluence. We continued to the campsite, right in the mouth of the crocodile caves, ending up a mere 1.2 km away. After surviving the night, free from crocodilian interference, my diehard gang of travel warriors battled their way back to the Confluence against all the odds while on an early morning bird walk.
The exact spot fell on the edge of a large field. The huge limestone cliffs that can be seen from the photos are part of the Ankarana massif.