Dust Over Taklamakan Desert and Tarim Basin, China42.4N 77.2E
Airborne dust from the Taklamakan Desert blows over the desert itself and around the Tarim Basin, in China. The desert covers an area of 270,000 km2 (100,000 sq mi) of the basin, 1,000 kilometres (620 mi) long and 400 kilometres (250 mi) wide.
The tall mountains surrounding the desert – the Kunlun Mountains to the south, the Pamir Mountains to the west and the Tian Shan Mountains to the north – prevent the dust from blowing beyond the basin.
Visible in the Tian Shan mountains to the north, in eastern Kyrgyzstan, is Lake Issyk Kul, an endorheic lake.