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Post by lunamoonfang on Thu Dec 23, 2010 1:46 am

Mountains dominate central and western Rwanda, with the Albertine branch of the Great Rift Valley running from north to south along the country's western border.[93] The highest peaks are found in the Virunga Mountains volcano chain in the north-west; this includes Mount Karisimbi, Rwanda's highest point at 4,507 metres (14,787 ft).[94] This western section of the country, which lies within the Albertine Rift montane forests ecoregion,[95] has an average elevation of 1,500 metres (4,921 ft) to 2,500 metres (8,202 ft).[4] The centre of the country is predominantly rolling hills, while the eastern border region consists of savanna, plains and swamps.[4]

Rwanda has a temperate tropical highland climate, with lower temperatures than is typical for equatorial countries due to the high altitude.[87] Rubona, in the centre of the country, has a typical daily temperature range between 14 C (57 F) and 25 C (77 F) with little variation through the year.[96] There are some temperature variations across the country, with the mountainous west being generally cooler than the lower lying east.[97] There are two rainy seasons in the year; the first runs from February to June and the second from September to December. These are separated by two dry seasons: the major one from June to September, during which there is often no rain at all, and a shorter and less reliable one from December to February.[98] Rainfall also varies geographically, with twice as much average annual precipitation in the west as in the east.[99]
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