Darkhad Depression Mongolia

by Andre


This fantastically beautiful place with some 200 lakes is the lake district of Mongolia at lower altitude than Lake Khovsgol. The lakes are surrounded by steppes, along with deep taiga forests bordering Siberia (Sayan Mountains) and Tuva.

A remarkable nomadic people called the Dukha ( Tsataan by outsiders). They are reindeer breeding nomads. They live in summer in the high taiga forest zones ? approx 2000 meters above sea level ? in the East Sayan Mountains along the Russian/Mongolian border with Tuva. In the winter they come down to the valleys.

They are reindeer herdsmen. They also hunt sable for their valued furs. They have animistic beliefs. Shamanism has survived to this day in the northern areas of Khovsgol province. They speak a completely different language, which essentially is the Tuvan urianhai, hence a Turkic language.

They live in dwellings called urtz, which resemble tepees or Lapp tents. The Dukha are the southernmost indigenous people herding reindeer. They do not traditionally keep reindeer for meat and pelts, as other circumpolar reindeer herding peoples. Rather they use their reindeer for transport and milk. The Mongolian reindeer is bigger in size compared to the Scandinavian equivalents.

Darkhad Depression Mongolia

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Hi, I am T. K. and I am the head eagle hunter of my tribe, just kidding! Connect with me on FB and leave  your comments, questions etc.