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Lake Alakol in Kazakhstan and Lake Bosten in China

43.7N 84.1E

October 2nd, 2011 Category: Deserts, Lakes

China - August 24th, 2011

Visible in the top left corner of this image of Asia is Lake Alakol, in east central Kazakhstan. The lake is the northwest extension of the region known as the Dzhungarian Gate (Alataw Pass), a narrow valley connects the southern uplands of Kazakhstan with arid northwest China.

Moving across the mountains and into China, another lake can be observed near the northern part of the Taklamakan Desert: Bosten Lake, a freshwater lake in the Bayin’gholin Mongol Autonomous Prefecture. Covering an area of about 1000 km2 (together with adjacent small lakes), it is one of the largest inland freshwater lakes in China.

Lake Bosten Surrounded by Desert, China

42.0N 87.0E

April 3rd, 2010 Category: Lakes

China - March 5th, 2010

China - March 5th, 2010

Bosten Lake is a freshwater lake located 57 km northeast of Korla, Xinjiang, China in the Bayin’gholin Mongol Autonomous Prefecture. Covering an area of about 1,000 square kilometers (together with adjacent small lakes), it is the largest lake in Xinjiang and one of the largest inland freshwater lakes in China.

The Kaidu River is the most important tributary to Lake Bosten, accounting for about 83% of its water inflow. A fishery exists on the lake and fish such as Bullhead and Blunt-snout bream are native to the lake. Westerners sometimes refer to it as the ‘Oriental Hawaii of Xinjiang’ because of its unique lush scenery surrounded by the harsh Gobi Desert.

Sand Dunes on Shores of Lake Bosten, China – July 20th, 2009

42.0N 87.0E

July 20th, 2009 Category: Image of the day, Lakes, Rivers

China - June 24th, 2009

China - June 24th, 2009

Lake Bosten, or Bositeng Lake, is a freshwater lake located 57 km northeast of Korla, Xinjiang, China. Covering an area of about 1,000 square kilometers (together with adjacent small lakes), it is the largest lake in Xinjiang and one of the largest inland freshwater lakes in China.

The Kaidu River is the most important tributary to Lake Bosten, accounting for about 83% of its water inflow. A fishery exists on the lake and fish such as Bullhead and Blunt-snout bream are native to it.

The lake is peculiar because of its unique lush scenery surrounded by harsh desert. The northern and western shores of the lake support agriculture, while the southern and eastern coastlines are flanked by desert and dunes. A more mountainous area is visible further south in this orthorectified image.

Taklamakan Desert Dunes Near Khotan River – October 24th, 2010

40.0N 86.8E

October 24th, 2010 Category: Deserts, Image of the day

China - October 13th, 2010

The Taklamakan Desert occupies the majority of this image, filling the greater part of the Tarim Basin in west-central China. The Kunlun Mountains are visible along the northern edge of the desert, capped in snow.

The greenish line cutting vertically across the desert is the Khotan River. Upon opening the full image, many individual rows of high sand dunes can be discerned throughout the desert, particularly to the east of the river.

On the right edge of the image thumbnail, just north of the desert, is Lake Bosten. Visible at the right edge of the full image, southeast of Lake Bosten, is the basin of the former Lake Lop Nur and a nearby field of salt pans, appearing as a greenish rectangular area. This part of the image appears hazy, as sand is blowing in the air.

Taklamakan Desert and Nearby Lakes, China

40.3N 86.6E

July 28th, 2010 Category: Lakes

China - July 17th, 2010

China - July 17th, 2010

The Taklamakan Desert fills the greater part of the Tarim Basin in west-central China. It is one of the world’s largest deserts, with a width of about 600 mi (960 km), and a surface area of 123,550 sq mi (320,000 sq km).

Although most of the image is dominated by the Taklamakan’s sand dunes, of note on the eastern end of the desert is an area of rectangular greenish blue salt fields (center of right edge). These are situated by the dry basin of the former Lake Lop Nur (best observed upon opening the full image).

Several lakes are visible nearby, including those in Tibet’s Lakes Region to the southeast and Lake Bosten to the north (above center). This dark blue freshwater lake has a surface area of about 1,000 square kilometers and provides irrigation for nearby agriculture.

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