Idea #673 – Walking along the salted Lake Rose in Senegal
Rose Lake is a large lagoon of 3 km², shallow, surrounded by dunes and located a few hundred meters from the Atlantic Ocean, 35 km northeast of Dakar. Its legendary orange-pink color is due to a cyanobacterium called Dunaliella salina, a microscopic organism that produces carotene when exposed to sunlight. The lake water is particularly salty, reaching a concentration of 380 grams of salt per liter. Salt has been mined since the 1970s.
The men, in the water up to their chests, break the salt deposited on the bottom with a picket before picking it up with a shovel to fill canoes with a capacity of tonne. The women are in charge of disembarking the canoes and piling the salt on the edges to dry it and whiten it in the sun. All of them smear themselves with shea butter to protect themselves from corrosive salinity. Salt is for canning or exported. The Senegalese government opened its exploitation to every man in Africa, on the condition that he does not steal and fight … The lake is also known as the last stage of the Paris-Dakar.
Where is it ?
Lac Rose, Sénégal