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Archive for Lakes

Volcanoes Near Lake Taupo, New Zealand

38.7S 175.8E

November 27th, 2009 Category: Lakes, Rivers, Volcanoes

New Zealand - November 13th, 2009

New Zealand - November 13th, 2009

Several volcanoes are visible near Lake Taupo, the large lake at the upper right, in this orthorectified image of New Zealand’s North Island. Following the Tongariro River, one of the lake’s main tributaries, upstream from the lower end of the lake, one comes to a smaller lake known as Lake Rotoaira.

Between these two lakes is Mount Pihanga, a 1325m volcanic peak on the North Island Volcanic Plateau. Another smaller body of water, Lake Rotopounamu, is at the north-west foot of the mountain. Mt. Pihanga and Lake Rotopounamu are part of the 5,129ha Pihanga Scenic Reserve, which in 1975 was added to the Tongariro National Park.

South of Mount Pihanga is Mount Tongariro, a volcanic complex located 20 kilometres to the southwest of Lake Taupo. It is the northernmost of the three active volcanoes that dominate the landscape of the central North Island. This volcanic massif, often simply referred to as Tongariro, has a height of 1,978 metres.

The volcano consists of at least 12 cones; Ngauruhoe, while often regarded as a separate mountain, is geologically a vent of Tongariro. It is also the most active, having erupted more than 70 times since 1839.

Continuing south of Ngauruhoe is Mount Ruapehu, an active stratovolcano at the southern end of the Taupo Volcanic Zone. It is 23 kilometres northeast of Ohakune and 40 kilometres southwest of the southern shore of Lake Taupo, within Tongariro National Park.  Ruapehu is one of the world’s most active volcanoes and the largest active volcano in New Zealand. It is the highest point in the North Island and includes three major peaks: Tahurangi (2,797 m), Te Heuheu (2,755 m) and Paretetaitonga (2,751 m).

Barguzin Nature Preserve by Lake Baikal, Russia

53.1N 107.6E

November 26th, 2009 Category: Lakes, Rivers

Russia - October 5th, 2009

Russia - October 5th, 2009

Several snow-capped mountain ridges surround Lake Baikal, in Russian Siberia, in this image taken in early autumn.  Flanking the northwest shores of the lake are the mountains of the Baikal Range, whose highest peak reaches 2572 meters, while the southern shores are framed by the Hamar-Daban Mountains.

Along the northeastern shores is the Barguzin Range, who tallest summits reach 2840 meters. Located on the west slope of the range, including the northeast shores of Lake Baikal and a part of the lake itself, is the Barguzin Nature Reserve. The name of the preserve (and the range) comes from the Barguzin River.

The area of the reserve is 2,482 km² (992.8 square miles). It was created in 1916 to preserve and increase the numbers of Barguzin Sable (Martes zibellina). Mountainous and taiga landscapes are also being preserved.

Colors of Lake Mackay, Western Australia

22.5S 128.6E

November 26th, 2009 Category: Lakes

Australia - November 24th, 2009

Australia - November 24th, 2009

Lake Mackay is one of hundreds of dry lakebeds scattered throughout Western Australia and the Northern Territory. In addition to the lake, the image also shows the dry appearance of Western Australia’s Great Sandy Desert, Gibson Desert, and Tanami Desert.

Lake Mackay measures approximately 60 miles (100 kilometers) east-west and north-south. The lake is the largest in Western Australia and has a surface area of 3,494 square kilometres (1,349 sq mi).

In this arid environment, salts and other minerals are carried to the surface through capillary action caused by evaporation, thereby producing the white reflective surface.

The darker, greyish areas of the lakebed are indicative of some form of desert vegetation or algae, some moisture within the soils of the dry lake, and the lowest elevations where pooling of water occurs.

The orange dots, on the other hand, are hills scattered across the eastern half of the lake and east-west-oriented sand ridges south of the lake.

Lake Namtso North of the Nyainqêntanglha Mountains, Tibet

30.7N 90.5E

November 24th, 2009 Category: Lakes

Tibet, China - November 15th, 2009

Tibet, China - November 15th, 2009

North of the Himalayas, the lakes of Tibet’s fittingly named “Lakes Region” appear in various shapes and sizes. The two largest lakes visible here on the Tibetan Plateau are Siling Co (left) and Namtso (center).

Lake Namtso or Lake Nam, meaning heavenly lake, is a mountain lake just north of the Nyenchen Tanglha, or Nyainqêntanglha, a mountain range which lies approximately 300 kilometers northwest of Lhasa in central Tibet. The mountain range has more than thirty peaks over 6,000 metres high, and four are more than 7,000 metres high.

A peculiarity of Lake Namtso is that it is the highest salt lake in the world, lying at an elevation of 4,718 m. It is also the largest salt lake in the Tibet Autonomous Region of China, although it is not the largest salt lake on the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau.

Land Between the Lakes, in Kentucky and Tennessee, USA

37.0N 83.8W

November 24th, 2009 Category: Lakes, Rivers

USA - November 8th, 2009

USA - November 8th, 2009

While the Mississippi River winds its way down the left side of this image, a pair of other distinctive bodies of water is visible to the right. These are Kentucky Lake (left) and Lake Barkley (right). The brown land between them is part of the Land Between the Lakes National Recreation Area, in the US states of Kentucky and Tennessee.

The Tennessee and Cumberland Rivers flow very close to each other in the northwestern corner of Middle Tennessee and Western Kentucky, separated by a rather narrow and mostly low ridge.

This area where they are only a few miles apart had been known as “Between the Rivers” since at least the 1830s or 1840s. After the Cumberland River was impounded in the 1960s and a canal was constructed between the two lakes, Land Between the Lakes became the largest inland peninsula in the United States.

Downstream from this area, the courses of the rivers then diverge again, with the result being that the mouth of the Cumberland into the Ohio River is approximately 40 mi (64 km) from that of the Tennessee.