Siberian Federal District
Republic of Khakassia
Time: Krasnoyarsk Time Zone (KRAT/KRAST).
Local time now:
Federal district: Siberian Federal District.
Main cities: Chernogorsk, Sayanogorsk, Abaza, Sorsk.
Land and Resources: The Republic of Khakassia is located in the southern part of Eastern Siberia. The Republic of Khakassia borders on Kemerovo Region in the northwest and the Altai Republic (or Mountainous Altai) and the Republic of Tuva in the south and southwest. It is situated in the valleys of the Abakan and Yenisei rivers and besides occupying the Minusinsk Basin also occupies part of the Chulym-Yenisei Valley. The Kuznetsky Alatau Mountains serve as the boundary west of Kemerovo Region. The southern border with the Altai Republic and Tuva follows the Western Sayan ranges. The Dzhebashsky Range and Yenisei River form Khakassia`s eastern boundary. The only border without a sharply defined natural boundary is the northern border with Krasnoyarsk Territory, which crosses the vast open steppe of the Chulym-Yenisei Valley. The main rivers are the Yenisei and its tributary the Abakan. Khkassia`s natural landscapes are splendid and varied, ranging from boundless steppes, plains, and taiga to mountains, which cover two-thirds of the republic`s territory. There are 230 large and small rivers in the republic and nearly 300 mountain and steppe lakes, both saline and freshwater. Lake Shira with its curative waters is one of these.
Climate: Khakassia has a severe continental climate with cold winters and hot summers. Temperatures are above zero for 200 days per year, and the weather is much sunnier than in western parts of the country.
Transportation: All main forms of transport are in use in the republic. Khkassia has one of the highest railway densities in Siberia and the Far East. Along the eastern border, the Yenisei River serves as a waterway to the north. The Sayansk complex is connected by the Yenisei and by rail with other districts of Eastern Siberia and Russia. Now Abakan is an important railway junction. The city has a river port, an airport.
Abakan fort was built at this location in 1675. It received the status of town and its current name in 1931. Abakan has three theatres.
Khakassia is a unique region with more than 30 000 ancient historical sites and an unsurpassed natural environment. It would be no exaggeration to say that this area is considered an archeological Mecca. The wealth of archeological finds from the Bronze Age and earlier shows that Southern Siberia was an ancient metallurgical center. Unique burial masks that realistically copy the features of the deceased are evidence of this. The masks were created by master craftsmen of the 1st to 5th centuries A.D.
Owing to Khakassia`s surprisingly varied climatic and landscape features, people and nature created unique historical and cultural monuments in this land of plenty.
Menhirs have survived in Khakassia as archeological monuments of the 18th century. They are located within an area of biolocation anomalies and are capable of influencing the human organism. Menhirs are huge upright slabs of Devonian sandstone up to 3 m high and 1.5 m wide. It has been established that ancient tribes used menhirs both for ritual ceremonies and as a cure for various ailments. One of the stones has oval-shaped depressions from being touched by the hands of people seeking cures. Another of these unique monuments of the 4th to 3rd centuries B.C. consists of two menhirs known as the Great Gate rising up on a mountain ridge in the Salbyk Valley. They once served as an unassailable fortress of Tatar princes and their armies.
Kurgans. Thousands of high, oval-shaped burial mounds are found all over Khakassia. These are kurgans, mysterious imposing monuments of past centuries. Forty thousand years of human activity created a distinctive historical and cultural topography in the Khakassia-Minusinsk Basin that intricately combined archeological, geological, and historical objects. For example, caves that served as dwellings for ancient people have been preserved, and ruins of ancient cities, irrigation systems, and defensive fortifications have been discovered. The most impressive monument is the Bolshoi Salbyksky kurgan, a symbol of the power and wealth of the Tatar state. It is an earth and stone pyramid more than 20 m high that served as the tomb of one of the Dinlin kings and his family. At one time there were another six enormous royal pyramids here. According to legend, this was a "spirit road" that led the souls of the dead through the hills at sunrise to the upper celestial world.
Fortress of Cheboki. This historical architectural monument dating to the second millennium B.C. rises above the shore of the Cherny Iyus River on the summit of Mt. Sve-takh. The fortress consists of two lines of defensive walls that stretch for 210 m and have a maximum height of 18 m. The walls built of massive limestone slabs have retained their original layout. Stone dwellings were attached to the inner wall. Pottery shards, stone arrowheads, axes, and the remains of ritual incense vessels were found at the fortress in 1989. The investigation of the monument was continued in 1996.
Fortress of Sokhatin. The fortification is located on Mt. Sokhatin on the left bank of the Bely Iyus River. It measures 50 by 22 m and has walls 1.2-6 m high and up to 2 m thick.
Fortress of Khara-tag. This fortress is situated on the summit of Mt. Khara-tag on the right bank of the Cherny Iyus River. It has four interior sections divided by stone walls up to 2 m high.
Fortress of Tarpig. This fortress is located on Mt. Tarpig on the right bank of the Bely Iyus River not far from the site of the Okunev inscriptions. The fortress has three lines of walls and measures an impressive 90 by 85 m.
The inscriptions known locally as Pichiktig-Tag (Book Mountain) are a masterpiece of decorative art. They date from the Okunev culture of the second millennium B.C. With great skill, the ancient people drew scenes of hunting, battles, and daily life on cliffs. Texts in ancient Khakassian script are inscribed below the drawings. The Sulekskie inscriptions of the Tukhtyatskaya culture are not only of local, but also of international significance. The Podkunenskaya inscriptions are accompanied by a multitude of human figures, domestic and wild animals, and birds. The Bolshaya and Malaya Boyarskie inscriptions are both interesting and entertaining, with pictures of a village with houses and yurts and a herdsman with a dog and a flock of sheep and goats and a herd of cattle. Khakassia also has many other inscriptions, fortresses, and kurgans representing the republic`s cultural and historical heritage.
Radon waters are the basis of operation of the Tumanny Health Center (Sanatorii Tumanny). The resort on Lake Shira is a resort of the Russian Federation and has the status of a resort of republican significance.
View of Hakassii
Megalits near village Safronov
Preobrazhensky park, Abakan
the Big Salbyksky barrow
the Preobrazhenskiy cathedral in AbakanSources:
Encarta World Atlas
http://www.gov.khakassia.ru/ - Official sites of the Republic of Khakassia