Deserts of Pakistan – The Kharan Desert

by on January 17, 2011
in Deserts of Pakistan

kharan-desert of Pakistan

This is also called the ‘Sandy Desert’ and is located in the Province of Balochistan. It covers an area of about 48,051 sq. km. It is basically covered with sand dunes, scrub vegetation and weathered rocks. Rainfall is very scarce in the desert leaving it with dry lakes. The largest dry lake of Balochistan is located in this desert called Hamun-i-Mashkel. The water of Kharan basin is entirely used for agriculture and domestic use and thus it is also called ‘closed basin’.

The desert consists of moving sand dunes reaching heights from 15 to 30 meters with an underlay of pebble floor. The areas between these dunes are hard when its dry and when it is wet it is sandy and treacherous. There is a huge barren area of this desert which comes in the territory of half of Iran with a continuation of waste land in Pakistan. This is a continous stretch of total barren land from the Alborz mountains in the northern direction to the plateau in Balochistan around 1200 kilometers to the southeast.

The altitude of this desert moves from about 1000 m in the north to approximately 250 m in the southwest. The average rainfall in the desert is about 100 mm annually. The entire area of the desert has inland drains and dry lakes. A lake basin in Iran called Gowd-e-Zereh gets excessive drainage and it is separated from the kharan desert in Pakistan by the hills of low Chaghai. It cause the river Mashkel to form a lake with the highlands which surrounds Koh-e-Tafta’n the great volcano. The 85 kilometer long and 35 kilometers wide  area of the surface of the Hamun-i-Mashkel is filled with sun cracked clay, salthy marshes, moving sand dunes and oxidized pebbles. This part is known for its sudden sand storms and constant mirage.

Reasons to visit Sibi

by on November 7, 2009
in Travel Pakistan

sibi Pakistan

Sibi the “hottest” place in Pakistan (the temperature exceeds 50oC during summer) is situated 163 km away from Quetta. This hotspot of Pakistan is also a hotbed of history. Sibi has seen some great conquerors of the world like Alexander the Great, the Arabs, Mahmud Ghaznavi and others. It was ruled by the Ghaznavis, the Mughals, the Kalhoras of Sindh and the list goes on. The daunting hero of Balochistan Mir Chakar Khan Rind built a fort in this region, the ruins of which are still present. The British constructed a Victoria Memorial Hall now renamed Jirga Hall where annual jirgas were held. It has now been converted to a museum where artifacts from Mehrgarh are displayed.

Present day Sibi is a busy town which is well connected to the other parts of Pakistan through roads, railways and also by air. The Pir Ghaib is a beautiful waterfall and a popular picnic spot some distance from Sibi.

Another attraction of Sibi is the Sibi Mela. It is an annual affair in which animal traders from all provinces come with their animals for trading. Horse and cattle shoes, camel races, handicrafts and tent pegging are other features of this fair.