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Ice in the Northern Portion of the Caspian Sea

46.5N 49.3E

January 20th, 2012 Category: Lakes, Rivers

Caspian Sea - December 29th, 2011

The Caspian Sea is the largest inland body of water in the world. It is divided into three distinct physical regions: the Northern, Middle, and Southern Caspian. Divisions between the three regions are dramatic. The Northern Caspian only includes the Caspian shelf, and is very shallow; it accounts for less than one percent of the total water volume with an average depth of only 5–6 metres (16–20 ft).

The northern portion of the Caspian Sea, shared by Russia and Kazakhstan, typically freezes in the winter, as can be observed in the upper part of this image, and in the coldest winters, ice will form in the south. Over 130 rivers provide inflow to the Caspian, with the Volga River being the largest. Here, ice can be seen forming along the edge of the Volga Delta.

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