Karakoram-West Tibetan Plateau alpine steppe

This ecoregion spans Ladakh within the upper Indus catchment, in the rain shadow of the Karakoram and the northwestern Himalayan ranges. The northern part exhibits tremendous topographic relief: river channels lower than 2,000 m elevation are separated by mountain massifs of 8,000 m elevation and more. Mean annual precipitation, derived from winter westerly storms and (increasingly) from summer thunderstorms, ranges from 200 to 900 mm.? The vegetation is cold desert steppe, with valley bottom stream banks supporting dense thickets of sea buckthorn, willow, tamarisk, wild rose, and other woody plants. Slopes above 3,000 m have a sparse cover of Stipa and Festuca grasses and forbs, with sedge bogs in places. Relict steppe juniper forest occurs.?

Source: Modified from One Earth CC BY-NC