Altai Republic is a federal subject of Russia. Altai Republic should not be confused with the neighboring Altai Krai.
The republic is situated in the very center of Asia at the junction of Siberian taiga, steppes of Kazakhstan and semi-deserts of Mongolia. Forests cover about 25% of the republic's territory.
• Area: 92,600 km²
o internal: Kemerovo Oblast (N), Republic of Khakassia (NE), Tuva Republic (E), and Altai Krai (W/NW).
o international: Mongolia (SE), China (S), and Kazakhstan (S/SW)
• Highest point: Mount Belukha (4,506 m)
• Maximum N->S distance: 360 km
• Maximum E->W distance: 380 km
The Altai Republic is located in the Novosibirsk Time Zone
Rivers and lakes
More than 20,000 tributaries sprawl throughout the mountainous Republic, making up for a total of more than 60,000 km worth of waterways. The Republic's largest rivers are the Katun and the Biya, both of which originate in the mountains and flow northwards. The junction of the two rivers eventually forms the Ob River, one of the longest rivers in Siberia, which flows northward to the Arctic Ocean.
The source of the black Biya River is Lake Teletskoye, the region's largest lake located in an isolated area far south in the mountains. The emerald-colored Katun River has its source at the Gebler glacier, which is situated on the Republic's highest point, Mount Belukha. The Katun River in particular holds a religious significance for native Altaians, as well as for many Russians who live in the area, as Mount Belukha is known in Altai folklore to be the gateway to mystical Shambhala.
The hydrographic network of the Republic also includes approximately 7,000 lakes, adding up to a total area of more than 700 km². The largest lake is Lake Teletskoye, which is 80 km long and 5 km...