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What are the Salt Range Mountains?

Mary McMahon
Updated Mar 05, 2024
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The Salt Range Mountains run between India and Pakistan, in a district of Pakistan known as the Punjab. These mountains are named for their large natural deposits of rock salt; in addition to being important commercially, they are also interesting archaeologically, as they contain a number of sites which are worthy of study. Visitors to the Punjab can usually arrange trips into the Salt Range Mountains, if they are interested in exploring this area and learning more about it.

These mountains stretch from the Indus River to the Jhelum River, making a clear natural boundary between Northern India and Southern Pakistan. The highest peaks of the Salt Range are Tilla Jogian and Sakaser. The average height of mountains in the Salt Range is around 2,200 feet (671 meters); in some areas, the Salt Range Mountains become more hilly than mountainous.

The salt in the Salt Range Mountains has been mined for centuries. Several major mines in this mountain range continue to produce salt; though the supply is not exactly inexhaustible, it will probably endure for an extended period of time. The climate in the Salt Range Mountains is rather arid, making it a hostile place to live; most people who live around the Salt Range live in valleys close to the mountains which allow them to farm and pasture livestock.

One interesting feature of the Salt Range Mountains is the numerous temples. Many of these temples are abandoned, but they provide interesting glimpses into the religious practices and daily lives of people who once lived in the area. Archaeologists periodically mount expeditions into the Salt Range to explore and catalog these temples, which are in varying states of ruin. There are also numerous pieces of sculpture and works of art preserved in the Salt Range Mountains.

These mountains also provide interesting evidence of fossilized animals. Salt is an excellent preservative, and some intriguing finds have been made in and around the salt mines. Archaeologists working at numerous dig sites have uncovered pieces of ancient civilizations like flint axes along with the fossilized remains of various prehistoric animals. These finds may help to map the course of evolution and geological history in the region.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the Salt Range Mountains?

The Salt Range Mountains are a series of low-lying hills located in Punjab, Pakistan, known for their extensive rock salt deposits. They stretch approximately 300 kilometers from the Jhelum River to the Indus River, offering a unique ecosystem with rich biodiversity and historical significance, including ancient fossils and archaeological sites.

Why are the Salt Range Mountains famous?

The Salt Range Mountains are renowned for their vast mineral wealth, particularly the world's largest deposits of rock salt. Khewra Salt Mine, the second-largest salt mine globally, is a prime example. The range is also celebrated for its geological history, with rocks dating back to the Precambrian era, and its diverse wildlife, including several endangered species.

What kind of wildlife can be found in the Salt Range Mountains?

The Salt Range Mountains host a variety of wildlife, including the Punjab urial, chinkara gazelle, and Indian leopard. Bird species such as the houbara bustard and various raptors also inhabit the area. Efforts are ongoing to conserve these species, some of which are facing threats due to habitat loss and hunting.

Are there any protected areas within the Salt Range Mountains?

Yes, the Salt Range Mountains include several protected areas aimed at conserving the region's unique flora and fauna. These include the Salt Range Wildlife Sanctuaries and the Kallar Kahar Lake. These sanctuaries serve as critical habitats for wildlife and play a role in preserving the natural heritage of the region.

What is the significance of the Salt Range Mountains in terms of geology?

Geologically, the Salt Range Mountains are significant due to their extensive and well-preserved stratigraphic record, offering insights into Earth's history. The range contains some of the oldest rocks on the continent, with marine fossils that help scientists understand the prehistoric Tethys Sea and the continental drift phenomenon.

Can tourists visit the Salt Range Mountains, and what can they see there?

Yes, tourists can visit the Salt Range Mountains, which offer attractions like the Khewra Salt Mine, where visitors can see the stunning natural formations of salt and historical mining tools. Additionally, the area's scenic beauty, ancient temples, and forts, such as the UNESCO-listed Rohtas Fort, provide a rich cultural experience.

AllThingsNature is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
Mary McMahon
By Mary McMahon

Ever since she began contributing to the site several years ago, Mary has embraced the exciting challenge of being a AllThingsNature researcher and writer. Mary has a liberal arts degree from Goddard College and spends her free time reading, cooking, and exploring the great outdoors.

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Discussion Comments

By anon19864 — On Oct 21, 2008

Hi, Which rivers join with these salt rivers in Pakistan?

Mary McMahon

Mary McMahon

Ever since she began contributing to the site several years ago, Mary has embraced the exciting challenge of being a...

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