This shot of Qilianshan taken near Zhangye, Gansu.|
The 祁連山 Qíliánshān range lies south of the Hexi Corridor on Gansu's border with Qinghai, extending more than 1,000 kilometers. The mountains rise to a maximum elevation of 5547 meters above sea level, and melt from their snow pack and glaciers are major water resources for the oasis along the Silk Road.
Elevations above 3,000 meters support extensive meadow and scrub vegetation on a landscape of rolling hills against a backdrop of rocky scree slopes and glaciated peaks. Rare mammals that inhabit the are include snow leopards (Panthera uncia), and Asiatic wild ass (Equus hemionus). Marmots, grouse and thinly scattered herds of wild ungulates co-exist here with increasing numbers of domestic livestock. Livestock are a major cause of habitat destruction due to overgrazing.