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Karatau Mountains

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Қаратау жотасы
Кентау. Вид 012 2007.jpg
View of the mountains in the area of Kentau city
Highest point
Elevation2,176 m (7,139 ft)[1]
Coordinates42°53′20″N 69°58′50″E / 42.88889°N 69.98056°E / 42.88889; 69.98056[2]
Length420 km (260 mi) NW/SE
Width90 km (56 mi) NE/SW
Karatau is located in Kazakhstan
Location in Kazakhstan
Parent rangeTian Shan
OrogenyAlpine orogeny
Type of rockShale, sandstone, limestone[1]
Easiest routeFrom Kentau

The Karatau or Qaratau (Kazakh: Қаратау жотасы, romanized: Qarataw jotasy) is a mountain range located in southern Kazakhstan.

The name Karatau means Black Mountain in the Kazakh language. The mountains have deposits of phosphorite, lead and zinc.[3]


The range extends for about 420 kilometres (260 mi) in a roughly NW/SE direction just north of the Syrdaria River. The Muyunkum Desert lies to the north of the range. The Karatau is the westernmost prolongation of the Tian Shan. The summits of the mountains are smooth and the slopes are cut by snow-fed rivers.[3] The Shabakty, Kyrshabakty, Ushbas, Bugun and Asa, are among the rivers having their sources in the range.[4]

World Heritage Status

There are numerous ancient archaeological sites in the range that display the stages of cultural evolution from the early Paleolithic Age (1 million BP) to the Neolithic Age (6500 BP).[5] This site was added to the UNESCO World Heritage Tentative List on September 24, 1998 in the Cultural category.[5]

Nature Reserve

The Karatau Nature Reserve is a protected area in the range established in 2004.[6]


  1. ^ a b "Каратау (горн. хребет на Тянь-Шане)". Great Soviet Encyclopedia (in Russian).
  2. ^ Google Earth
  3. ^ a b "Qarataū". Encyclopedia Britannica. Retrieved 2022-10-05.
  4. ^ "K-42 Topographic Chart (in Russian)". Retrieved 27 October 2022.
  5. ^ a b Paleolithic sites and geomorphology of Karatau mountain range - UNESCO World Heritage Centre
  6. ^ Decree of the Government of the Republic of Kazakhstan "On the establishment of the state institution" Karatau State Nature Reserve "of the Committee for Forestry and Hunting of the Ministry of Agriculture of the Republic of Kazakhstan"; 1 March 2004

External links

  • Media related to Karatau at Wikimedia Commons
This page was last edited on 3 January 2023, at 15:09
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