Second Defile

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One of the most beautiful stretches on the Ayeyarwady River lies a couple of hours downstream from Bhamo, where the river narrows to just 330 ft (100 m) as it flows through a belt of thickly wooded mountains. Water levels along this scenic 7.5-mile (13.5-km) segment, known as the Second Defile (the First Defile lies north of Bhamo), can reach nearly 200 ft (60 m)  in the rainy season, when boat- men have to keep a close eye  on the famous green and red Parrot’s Beak warning marker painted on a rock – if the bird  is not visible, the flood is dan- gerously high and vessels are  obliged to turn back.

Equally emblematic of the Second Defile is the impressive 985-ft- (300-m-) high Nat Myet Hna Taung or Welatha Cliff, a soaring limestone escarp ment reminis cent of those that line parts of the Mekong River in neighboring Laos.

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