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The climate of Zailiysky Ala-Tau.

Travel in mountains of Kazakhstan.

“Not all those who wander are lost”

J.R.R. Tolkien.

Big travel over four Kazakhstan.

The climate of Zailiysky Ala-Tau and all mountainous areas, is isolated by the vertical width and remoteness from oceans. Situation in the center of the Euroasian continent and the southern arrangement promoted increase in amount of heat, reduction of moistening and sharp continentality of climate.
However with increase in absolute height of the area in the foothills moisture content increases, the summer becomes not roast and winter of softer. From the beginning of the foothill plain (the river Or, the Kapchagay reservoir) to snow tops throughout about 100 km the climate gradually changes from roast very dry sharply continental to damp and very cold. In the floodplain of the river Ili and the Kapchagay reservoir in a desert zone climate dry, hot and sharply continental.
Average annual air temperature 6,4 - 8,7'. Average monthly temperature in July 23 - 25' is warm, maximum - 44' heats. Average temperature of the coldest month of year (January) - minus 9,4 - 14,1'. In separate days frosts can reach to 45'.
Absolute amplitude of fluctuation of temperatures within a year reaches 99', it is already desert continental climate. Duration of the cold period - 153 - 170 days. The sum of effective positive temperatures is higher than 10' - 3500 - 3600'.
The abundance of heat allows to grow up thermophilic rice. However rainfall in the mountain plain around the Kapchagay reservoir only 250 mm on average drop out. In the summer relative humidity of air falls to 25 - 30%.
With filling of a huge Kapchagay reservoir the coastal climate became a little more damp. In a foothill desert steppe belt around the Almaty airport (674 m) climate hot, droughty, continental. Average annual temperature changes from 6,6 to 7,7'.
In July average monthly temperature 22,4'; in January - minus 12,7'. Frosts can reach minus in the winter 43', the maximum temperature in the summer 42'. Amplitude of fluctuation of extreme temperatures - 85. Duration, cold period of 141 - 169 days.
Average annual amount of precipitation of 420 mm. The sum of positive temperatures 3400 - 3500', the State Customs Committee 0,5 - 0,7. Cultivation of plants requires irrigation. Climatic conditions of a steppe foothill belt are characterized by data of meteorological stations of Almaty (observatory, 848 m), Talgar (1015 m) and the Kamensk plateau (1350 m).
Here climate not too hot, more humidified. Average annual temperature 7,7 - 8,7'. Average temperature of July plus 19,3 - 22,4', January - minus 3,7 - 7,4'. Average temperature of summer months exceeds 20'. Annual amount of precipitation on average 559 mm.
The sum of positive air temperatures changes from 2510 to 3140', the State Customs Committee 0,7 - 1,0, 174 - 181 put duration of the cold period. The main amount of precipitation drops out during the spring and summer period with a spring maximum.
Fall always dry and warm. In August, September and October the monthly rainfall averages about 10 - 30 mm. Relative humidity of air in this belt close to optimum also averages 55 - 60%. Even in hot months it seldom falls lower than 50%.
Duration of winter with snow cover usually makes 101 - 104 day. Height of snow cover - 25 - 30 cm. The period with low negative temperatures: lower than 15' does not exceed 20 days in a year. In separate years frosts reach 40'.
At such temperature plums, apricots and some grades of apple-trees strongly freeze. Hard frosts after enough frequent winter thaw are especially dangerous. Sometimes even in the coldest month air temperature rises to 15' is warm.
So, at the beginning of January, 1979 the thermometer showed plus 15 - 17'. In Almaty in damp years about 924 rainfall, in droughty - only 293 mm drops out. Therefore for normal life of plants, especially at the end of summer and in the fall, irrigation is obligatory.
If in colder regions of the country at plentiful rainfall there is a remoistening or flooding of the soil, then in this belt never of excess moisture happens: evaporation and are so big that approach 1500 mm. Also droughty years are not terrible here.
At a strong heat and dryness intensity of thawing of glaciers increases, there is more irrigation water. In this case on irrigation lands receive plentiful harvests. On an amount of precipitation, temperature, soft winter and rather dry scientists of the Kazakh research hydrometeorological institute consider climate of Almaty and the foothills close to Mediterranean, optimum for life of people, animals and plants.

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A. G. Isachenko, A. A. Shlyarnikov. World nature. "Landscapes", Moscow, "Thought", 1989.

Alexander Petrov.