Nestled atop the Khasi Hills in the Northeastern corner of India is the village of Mawsynram. Mawsynram boasts the wettest climate on earth, receiving an average of 1,187.2 centimeters (467 inches) of rain per year.
The prodigious rainfall totals can be attributed to the topography and climate of the region. As air currents sweep over the Bay of Bengal and floodplains in Bangladesh moisture is gathered and transported north. When these moisture laden clouds reach the steep Khasi Hills the transported moisture becomes the heavy rains. Warm air can hold more moisture than cold air. When weather systems reach hills air is forced upward over the land and the air cools as it moves, decreasing the moisture it can can carry and triggering rain.
The driest region on earth, besides Antarctica, is the Atacama desert, which receives less than 0.01 centimeters of rain per year. Some places in this desert have not had rainfall in over 400 years. The extremes of earth’s regions are fascinating.
Pictures of Mawsynram:http://bit.ly/1x3ASXC Info About Atacama: http://bit.ly/1mFtmQn Photo Courtesy: of Amos Chapple/Rex. The Guardian
Meghalaya, India has the distinction of being the wettest place on Earth. The village of Mawsynram in Meghalaya annually receives 467 inches of rain, and the outdoor workers often wear waterproof suits made from bamboo and banana leaves. The most distinctive part of the village is that the residents have created a bridge system made out of the living rooms of tree roots, which strengthen with every downpour.
“Three laborers walk into Mawsynram under the traditional Khasi umbrellas known as knups. Made from bamboo and banana leaf, the knups are favored for allowing two-handed work, and for being able to stand up to the high winds which lash the region during heavy rainstorms.”
“Laborers wearing knups clear rockfall after a night of heavy rain in Mawsynram.”