|South Siberian Mountains|
Sunset over the Kuznetsk Alatau
|Elevation||4,506 m (14,783 ft)|
|Length||3,000 km (1,900 mi)E/W|
|Area||1,500,000 square kilometres (580,000 sq mi)|
|Location||Altai Republic, Altai Territory, Kemerovo Oblast, Tuva, Khakassia, Krasnoyarsk Krai, Irkutsk Oblast, Buryatia, Transbaikal Krai|
The South Siberian Mountains (Russian:Южно-Сибирские горы) are one of the largest mountain systems of the Russian Federation. The total area of the system of mountain ranges is more than 1.5 million km². The South Siberian Mountains are located in the Siberian and Far Eastern Federal Districts of Russia, as well as partly in Mongolia. The territory of the mountain system is one of the Great Russian Regions.
The system is composed of a number of ranges aligned in an east–west direction stretching for almost 3,000 kilometres (1,900 mi). Part of them are near the border with Mongolia and China, while others rise further north. To the south the South Siberian ranges merge with the Mongolian and Chinese mountain chains and plateaus. In the west lies the Dzungarian Basin and to the east the Mongolian Plateau. To the north the South Siberian Mountains merge with the West Siberian Lowland and the Central Siberian Plateau, both on the Russian side. To the southeast the Baikal Range is separated from the Eastern Sayan by the Baikal Rift Zone and the Tunkin Depression. To the northeast of its eastern end the South Siberian mountain system merges with the East Siberian Mountains.
Geologically the mountains of the system underwent a process of rejuvenation during the Alpine orogeny. Earthquakes are common all across the area of the system.
Owing to the mountainous terrain, large swathes of the South Siberian system are uninhabited. The main cities of the vast region are, from west to east: Krasnoyarsk, Angarsk, Irkutsk, Ulan-Ude and Chita.
Some of the main rivers of Siberia have their origin in the South Siberian mountain system, such as the Lena, Irtysh, the Yenisei and the Ob River. Other rivers of the area are the Argun, Tom, Shilka, Selenga, Katun and the Biya River. The great Lake Baikal is the most well-known lake of the region. Other much smaller lakes are Lake Teletskoye, Lake Markakol, Lake Todzha (Azas) and Noyon-Khol.
Russia, the world's largest country, comprises much of northern Eurasia, and stretches over a vast expanse of Europe and Northern Asia. Due to its size, Russia displays both monotony and diversity. As with its topography, its climates, vegetation, and soils span vast distances. From north to south the East European Plain is clad sequentially in tundra, coniferous forest (taiga), mixed and broadleaf forests, grassland (steppe), and semi-desert as the changes in vegetation reflect the changes in climate. Siberia supports a similar sequence but is predominantly taiga. The country contains forty UNESCO biosphere reserves.
The Altai Mountains, also spelled Altay Mountains, are a mountain range in Central and East Asia, where Russia, China, Mongolia, and Kazakhstan come together, and where the rivers Irtysh and Ob have their headwaters. The massif merges with the Sayan Mountains in the northeast, and gradually becomes lower in the southeast, where it merges into the high plateau of the Gobi Desert. It spans from about 45° to 52° N and from about 84° to 99° E.
Ulan-Ude is the capital city of the Republic of Buryatia, Russia; it is located about 100 kilometers (62 mi) southeast of Lake Baikal on the Uda River at its confluence with the Selenga. According to the 2010 Census, 404,426 people lived in Ulan-Ude; up from 359,391 recorded in the 2002 Census, making the city the third-largest in the Russian Far East by population.
The Sayan Mountains are a mountain range in southern Siberia, Russia and northern Mongolia. In the past, it served as the border between Mongolia and Russia.
The Selenga or Selenge is a major river in Mongolia and Buryatia, Russia. Originating from its headwater tributaries, the Ider and the Delger mörön, it flows for 992–1,024 kilometres (616–636 mi) before draining into Lake Baikal. The Selenga therefore makes up the most distant headwaters of the Yenisey-Angara river system.
The Central Siberian Plateau is a vast mountainous area in Siberia, one of the Great Russian Regions.
The Vitim is a major tributary of the Lena. With its source east of Lake Baikal, the Vitim flows north through the Transbaikal Mountains and the town of Bodaybo. Including its source river Vitimkan, it is 1,978 kilometres (1,229 mi) long, and has a drainage basin of 225,000 square kilometres (87,000 sq mi). The river peaks in June and freezes from November to May. It is navigable from the Lena to Bodaybo. Upstream, tugs can haul barges as far as the Baikal Amur Mainline (BAM), but this is becoming rare. Formerly, because of its swift current, goods were hauled 144 kilometres (89 mi) overland from Chita to a place called Romanovka. There boats were built, floated down the river, and broken up at their destination. This lasted until the late 1940s. The Vitim is an excellent place for adventure rafting, but is rarely visited because of its isolation.
South Central Siberia is a geographical region north of the point where Russia, China, Kazakhstan and Mongolia come together.
The geology of Russia, the world's largest country, which extends over much of northern Eurasia, consists of several stable cratons and sedimentary platforms bounded by orogenic (mountain) belts.
Arshan is a small resort village in the Tunkinsky District, Republic of Buryatia, Russian Federation. It is known for its mineral waters, spa, and the Khoymorski Datsan Boddhidharma Tibetan Buddhist temple. The name comes from the Buryat word for "spring."
The Altai-Sayan region is an area of central Asia proximate to the Altai Mountains and the Sayan Mountains, near to where Russia, China, Mongolia and Kazakhstan come together. This region is one of the world centers of temperate plant diversity. Its biological, landscape, historical, cultural and religious diversity is unique. 3,726 species of vascular plants are registered in the region including 700 threatened or rare species, 317 of which are endemic; fauna consists of 680 species, 6% of which are endemic. Its ecosystem is comparatively unchanged since the last ice age, and it is the host of endangered species that include the saiga, nerpa, and snow leopard. It is the focus of ongoing international and regional environmental conservation initiatives.
The Republic of Buryatia is a federal subject of Russia which, according to the IMF, is an emerging economy.
The Trans-Baikal conifer forests ecoregion covers a 1,000 km by 1,000 km region of mountainous southern taiga stretching east and south from the shores of Lake Baikal in the Southern Siberia region of Russia, and including part of northern Mongolia. Historically, the area has been called "Dauria", or Transbaikal. It is in the Palearctic realm, and mostly in the boreal forests/taiga biome with a subarctic, humid climate. It covers 200,465 km2 (77,400 sq mi).
The Sayan montane conifer forests ecoregion covers the mid-elevation levels of the Sayan Mountains, the high mountain range between the taiga of Siberia, Russia to the north, and the steppes of Mongolia to the south. The slopes of the mountains at the mid-altitudes are covered by Temperate coniferous forest. The ecoregion is in the Palearctic realm, with a cold semi-arid climate. It covers 35,741,835 km2 (13,800,000 sq mi).
The Khentei-Daur Highlands, also known as Khentei-Chikoy Highlands(Хэнтэ́й-Чико́йское наго́рье) are a mountainous area in the Transbaikal Krai, Far Eastern Federal District, Russia.
The East Siberian Mountains or East Siberian Highlands are one of the largest mountain systems of the Russian Federation. They are located between the Central Yakutian Lowland and the Bering Strait in the Far Eastern Federal District and Northeast Siberia. The whole area of the East Siberian System has a very low population density. The territory of the mountain system is one of the Great Russian Regions.
The Great Russian Regions are eight geomorphological areas in the Russian Federation displaying characteristic forms of relief. Seven of them are east of the Urals.
The Chikokon Range is a mountain range in the Transbaikal Region of Siberia, Russia. The range is named after the Chikokon River, a small left tributary of the Chikoy River.
The Selenga Highlands are a mountain area in Buryatia and the southwestern end of Transbaikal Krai, Russian Federation.
Ulan-Burgas, is a mountain range in Buryatia, Russia.