MAMBILLA PLATEAU The Mambilla Plateau, in the southeast corner of Taraba State, shares a border with Cameroon. A high grassland plateau averaging about 1800 meters,
It is scenic, cool and a pleasant change from the heat and humidity of Lagos. Visitors are advised to use a sport utility vehicle or jeep. They should also pack essentials, camping equipment and food. As an option, there are a few hotels on the plateau.
The Plateau which developed on basement complex rocks, measures about 96km along its curved length and 40km wide, and bounded by an escarpment which is about 900m high in some places. The Mambilla Plateau forms the watershed from which the major drainage systems in Taraba State take their source. Rivers Benue,Donga and Taraba (from which the state derives its name) are the dominant drainage systems which flow across the Muri plains to drain the entire state
Mambilla has cattle ranches, tea plantations and rolling, grassy hills. It is different from the rest of Nigeria with regard to flora and fauna and is home to some rare species of birds and animals, especially at the Gashaka-Gumti National Park.
Like most parts of northern Nigeria, Taraba State has a wet and dry climate. The wet season lasts, on the average, from April to October. Mean annual rainfall varies between 1058mm in the north around Jalingo and Zing, to over 1300mm in the South around Serti and Takum. The wettest months are August and September.
The dry season lasts from November to March. The driest months are December and January with relative humidity dropping to about 15 percent. Mean annual temperature around Jalingo is about 28°C with maximum temperatures varying between 30°C and 39.4°C. The minimum temperatures range between 15°C to 23°C. The Mambilla plateau has climatic characteristics typical of a temperate climate.
The Park provides an attractive setting, well worth a visit.
There is a major road to Mambilla from Lagos, Benin City, Onitsha, Enugu, Otukpo, Yandev, Katsina Ala, Wukari, Mutum Biyu, Bali, Serti and Gembu. You can also fly into Yola Airport, then drive a few miles south to Mambilla.
So, what are you waiting for, why not have a Mambilla Plateau experience, a trial will convince you.
By: Yetunde Farinloye 05/02/09
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