Hoggar Mountains

The Hoggar Mountains (Arabic: جبال هقار‎, Berber: idurar n Ahaggar, Tuareg: Idurar Uhaggar) are a highland region in the central Sahara, southern Algeria, along the Tropic of Cancer. The mountains cover an area of approximately 550,000 square km (212,000 square miles).[1]

Hoggar Mountains
اسكرام 2 - تمنراست
Landscape of the Assekrem region in the Hoggar in Tamanrasset Province
Highest point
PeakMount Tahat
Elevation2,908 m (9,541 ft)
Coordinates23°17′20″N 05°32′01″E / 23.28889°N 5.53361°ECoordinates: 23°17′20″N 05°32′01″E / 23.28889°N 5.53361°E
Naming
Native nameجبال هقار
Idurar Ahaggar
Idurar n Uhaggar
Geography
Hoggar Mountains is located in Algeria
Hoggar Mountains
Hoggar Mountains
Location in southern Algeria
CountryAlgeria
Hoggar National Park
IUCN category II (national park)
0110 GM Algerian National Parks Ahggar Hoggar National Park 01
Locator map
LocationTamanrasset Province, Algeria
Nearest cityTamanrasset
Coordinates22°08′N 6°10′E / 22.133°N 6.167°E
Area3,800 km2 (1,500 sq mi)
Established1987

Geography

Hoggar8
An oasis in the Hoggar Mountains
Asskrem Hoggar 2

This mountainous region is located about 1,500 km (930 mi) south of the capital, Algiers. The area is largely rocky desert with an average elevation of more than 900 m (3,000 ft) above sea level. The highest peak, Mount Tahat, is at 2,908 m (9,541 ft).[1] The mountains are primarily composed of metamorphic rock approximately 2 billion years old, although there are areas where more recent volcanic activity has laid down much newer rock.[1] Several of the more dramatic peaks, such as Ilamen, are the result of erosion wearing away extinct volcano domes, leaving behind the more resistant material that plugged the volcanic cores.[1]

Assekrem is a famous and often visited point where Charles de Foucauld built a hermitage in 1911.[2] The main city near the Hoggar Mountains is Tamanrasset, built in a desert valley or wadi.

Environment

The Hoggar Mountain range typically experiences hot summers, with a cold winter climate. Temperatures fall below freezing in the winter. Rainfall is rare and sporadic year-round. However, since the climate is less extreme than in most other areas of the Sahara, the Hoggar Mountains are a major location for biodiversity, including number of relict species. The Hoggar Mountains are part of the West Saharan montane xeric woodlands ecoregion. It is also one of the national parks of the country.

Fauna and flora

Slightly to the west of the Hoggar range, a population of the endangered African wild dog (Lycaon pictus) remained viable into the 20th century, but is now thought to be extirpated within this entire region.[3]

Analysis of collected scat in 2006 showed the presence of the Northwest African cheetah in the region.[4][5]

Relict populations of the West African crocodile persisted in the Hoggar Mountains until the early 20th century.[6]

The park also contains a population of herbivores such as the saharan subspecies of the barbary sheep and the Dorcas gazelle.[7]

Vegetation in this area includes trees such as Vachellia tortilis, Vachellia seyal, myrtle and Tamarix aphylla which are scattered throughout the area. Other plants may include Citrullus colocynthis and Calotropis procera.

Cultural significance

Prehistoric settlement is evident from extant rock paintings dating to 6000 BC.[8] The Hoggar Massif is the land of the Kel Ahaggar Tuareg.[1] The tomb of Tin Hinan, the woman believed to be the matriarch of the Tuareg, is located at Abalessa, an oasis near Tamanrasset. According to legend, the Tim Lam are from the Tafilalt region in the Moroccan Atlas Mountains.

Panoramic view

Panorama of The Ahaggar mountains
Panorama of The Ahaggar mountains

See also

References

  1. ^ a b c d e Scheffel, Richard L.; Wernet, Susan J., eds. (1980). Natural Wonders of the World. United States of America: Reader's Digest Association, Inc. pp. 32–33. ISBN 0-89577-087-3.
  2. ^ Sattin, Anthony Ham, Nana Luckham, Anthony (2007). Algeria (1st ed.). Footscray, Vic.: Lonely Planet. p. 188. ISBN 1741790999.
  3. ^ Hogan, C. Michael (2009). "Painted Hunting Dog: Lycaon pictus". GlobalTwitcher.com. N. Stromberg. Archived from the original on December 9, 2010.
  4. ^ Busby, G. B. J. (2006). The Cheetah (Acinonyx jubatus) in Northern Africa : A Non-Invasive Genetic Study of Carnivores from the Ahaggar Mountains, Southern Algeria (PDF) (Master's thesis). Imperial College London.
  5. ^ Busby, G. B. J.; Gottelli, D.; Durant, S.; et al. (November 2006). "A Report from the Sahelo Saharan Interest Group - Office du Parc National de l'Ahaggar Survey, Algeria (March 2005) - Part 5: Using Molecular Genetics to study the Presence of Endangered Carnivores" (PDF). Unpublished Report.
  6. ^ Brito, J. C.; Martínez-Freiría, F.; Sierra, P.; et al. (2011). "Crocodiles in the Sahara Desert: An Update of Distribution, Habitats and Population Status for Conservation Planning in Mauritania". PLOS One. 6 (2): e14734. CiteSeerX 10.1.1.293.4325. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0014734.
  7. ^ "Ahaggar National Park, Hoggar | By Algeria Channel". www.algeria.com. Retrieved 2017-09-15.
  8. ^ Haggett, Peter (2001). Encyclopedia of World Geography. Marshall Cavendish. ISBN 0-7614-7289-4.

Further reading

  • Keenan, Jeremy (1977). The Tuareg: People of Ahaggar. London: Allen Lane, Penguin Books. ISBN 0-7139-0636-7.

External links

Assekrem

Assekrem is a high plateau in the Hoggar Mountains of southern Algeria, rising from the larger Atakor plateau Assekrem is within Ahaggar National Park. The maximum altitude of the plateau is 2,726 metres (8,944 ft).The hermitage of Charles de Foucauld, which continues to be inhabited by a few monks, is at the top of the Assekrem plateau.

Atakor volcanic field

Atakor volcanic field ("Atakor" in Tuareg means "swollen part, knot at the end of something") is a volcanic field in Algeria. It lies in the Hoggar mountains and consists of a variety of volcanic features such as lava flows and about 450 individual vents which create a spectacular scenery.

Atakor is one of several large volcanic fields in this mountain range, which sits atop of a domal uplift and has erupted basalt, trachyte and phonolite. Volcanism in Atakor took place in several different phases, beginning 20 million years ago and continuing into the Holocene. Presently there is fumarolic activity.

Awlad Sidi Shaykh

The Awlad Sidi Shaykh (or Ouled Sidi Cheikh) was a confederation of Arab tribes in the west and south of Algeria led by the descendants of the Sufi saint Sidi Shaykh. The Awlad had religious authority, and also owned agricultural settlements and engaged in trade. During the French occupation of Algeria they alternately cooperated with and opposed the colonialists.

Byron Khun de Prorok

"Count" Byron Khun de Prorok (1896–1954, born in Philadelphia as Francis Byron Kuhn) was a Hungarian-American amateur archaeologist, anthropologist, and author of four heroic travelogues. He has come to be regarded as the original tomb raider, or grave robber, one "loved by audiences and held in contempt by the scientific community".Count Byron De Prorok was educated at the University of Geneva. He worked on the excavations at Carthage from 1920 to 1925 and held the Archaeological Institute of America's prestigious Norton Lectureship in 1922–1923.During the later 1920s and early 1930s, Prorok undertook a series of expeditions in Africa of dubious scientific value, pursuing ancient legends and eventually came to believe he had found evidence that proved Atlantis lay in North Africa, the true location of the fabled Biblical land of Ophir and what he supposed were the ruins of an ancient temple where Alexander the Great "became a god". In addition to these tremendous 'discoveries' he also claimed to be a member of the Order of the Holy Sepulchre, the Royal Archaeological Institute and The Royal Geographical Society.

His numerous critics say that this "count" Byron de Prorok was neither a real count nor an archaeologist, was expelled from The Royal Geographical Society (allegedly in 1932), who had "a vivid imagination" and "was given to gross exaggeration". He was, however, an active member of the Adventurers' Club of New York.

Regardless of his archaeological faults, De Prorok was a pioneer in using motion pictures, which he did first in 1920. However, none of his films survive.His published works include Digging for Lost African Gods (1926), Mysterious Sahara: The Land of Gold, of Sand and of Ruin (1929), Dead Men Do Tell Tales (1933) and In Quest of Lost Worlds (1935).

In Dalag

In Dalag (also written I-n-Daladj) is a village in the commune of Tamanrasset, in Tamanrasset District, Tamanrasset Province, Algeria. It lies on the west bank of Oued i-n-Daladj in the Hoggar Mountains, 48 kilometres (30 mi) east of Tamanrasset city.

Izernène

Izernène is a village in the commune of Tamanrasset, in Tamanrasset District, Tamanrasset Province, Algeria. It lies in the Hoggar Mountains 28 kilometres (17 mi) northeast of the city of Tamanrasset.

Kel Adagh

The Kel Adagh (var. Kel Adrar, Kel Adghagh, less commonly Kel Ifoghas) are a Tuareg confederation of clans (or "Drum-Groups") living in the region of the Adrar des Iforas highlands in Mali. The name comes from Tamasheq "Kel" ("those from/of") and "Adagh" ("Mountains"). In the modern era, not all Tuareg in the Adrar des Iforas are Kel Adagh, while some Kel Adagh are spread through northern Niger and southern Algeria, with populations in the Aïr Mountains, Tassili n'Ajjer, and the Hoggar Mountains. Most Kel Adagh derive from Noble and Warrior castes and their tributaries.

Noble Kel Adagh in Ifoghas include:

Kel Afella (North) : tributaries of the Amenokal of Adagh.

Kel Taghlit

Kel Essouk (Religious caste tributary group)

Kel Ouzzeyn

Ifergoumessen

IriyakenTributaries include around forty tribes, the more notable of which are :

Taghat Mellet ("Those of the white horse")

Idnan

Ibatanaten

Kel Ahaggar

Kel Ahaggar (Berber: ⴾⵍ ⵂⴴⵔ) (trans: "People of Ahaggar") is a Tuareg confederation inhabiting the Hoggar Mountains (Ahaggar mountains) in Algeria. The confederation is believed to have been founded by the Tuareg matriarch Tin Hinan, whose monumental tomb is located at Abalessa. The official establishment is dated to around 1750. It has been largely defunct since 1977, when it was terminated by the Algerian government.

The language of the confederation is Tahaggart, a dialect of Tamahaq.

Mertoutek

Mertoutek is a village in the commune of Idlès, in Tazrouk District, Tamanrasset Province, Algeria. It lies in the northern Hoggar Mountains on the eastern side of a wadi, 61 kilometres (38 mi) northwest of the town of Idlès and 158 kilometres (98 mi) north of Tamanrasset.

Mount Tahat

Mount Tahat (Arabic: جبل تاهات‎) is the highest mountain peak in Algeria. It sits at an elevation of 2,908 metres (9,541 ft). Other sources indicate an elevation of 3,003 metres (9,852 ft). Tahat is also the highest peak in the Hoggar Mountains. Its nearest city is Tamanrasset which is located 56 km to the south.

Mount Tahat is of volcanic origin. It is located in an arid, rocky high plateau area of the central Sahara Desert. The Tuareg inhabit this region. To the north lie the Tassili n'Ajjer mountains, which contain cave paintings dating from a period between 8000 and 2000 BC. The rock art is pastoral, showing cattle breeding and hunting of animals that are today exclusively found in the southern Sahara's climate.

Souring bag

A souring bag (also called émesesley, agiwir, or tanwart) is a hide or leather bag used for fermenting milk. It is used by Berbers, especially Touareg.

Nicolaisen (1963) describes the method of souring milk in the Ahaggar (Hoggar Mountains): "Milk of the morning yield is put into a skin bag ("émesesley")... to remain in this bag until the next morning when the churning takes place. During the hot season the "émesesley", filled with milk, is placed in the shade of the tent in daytime, while in winter it is placed in sunshine, or close to the fire. Some milk of the evening yield is sometimes added to the morning milk in the "émesesley". Before churning (into butter) the milk thus soured is poured into the proper churning bag ("agiwir", "tanwart") which is inflated and shaken".

Such bags are described in Encyclopedie Berbere and can be found in some ethnographic museums.

Talan Teidit

Talan Teidit (also written Tala-n-Tehidit) is a village in the commune of Tamanrasset, in Tamanrasset District, Tamanrasset Province, Algeria, 15 kilometres (9.3 mi) south of the city of Tamanrasset in the Hoggar Mountains.

Tanezrouft

The Tanezrouft (Arabic: تنزروفت‎) is a natural region located along the borders of Algeria, Niger and Mali, west of the Hoggar mountains. It is one of the most desolate parts of the Sahara Desert.

Tarhaouhaout

Tarhaouhaout is a village in the commune of Tamanrasset, in Tamanrasset District, Tamanrasset Province, Algeria. It lies in the Hoggar Mountains 42 kilometres (26 mi) east of the city of Tamanrasset. Fort Motylinsky is located nearby.

Tarhenanet

Tarhenanet (also known as Teghenânet) is a village in the commune of Tamanrasset, in Tamanrasset District, Tamanrasset Province, Algeria. It lies 42 kilometres (26 mi) north of Tamanrasset city in the Hoggar Mountains.

Teffedest Mountains

The Teffedest Mountains are a mountain range in southern Algeria. They are part of the Hoggar Mountains (Ahaggar Mountains), located in the Sahara.

Tin Hinan Tomb

The Tin Hinan Tomb (French: Tombeau de Tin Hinan) is a monumental tomb located at Abalessa in the Sahara, in the Hoggar Mountains of southern Algeria. The sepulchre was built for Tin Hinan, the Tuareg ancient Queen of the Hoggar (Ahaggar).

Tuareg Shield

The Tuareg Shield is a geological formation lying between the West African craton and the Saharan Metacraton in West Africa. Named after the Tuareg people, it has complex a geology, reflecting the collision between these cratons and later events. The landmass covers parts of Algeria, Niger and Mali.

Ténéré

The Ténéré (Berber: Tiniri, literally: desert, wilderness) is a desert region in the south central Sahara. It comprises a vast plain of sand stretching from northeastern Niger into western Chad, occupying an area of over 400,000 square kilometres (150,000 sq mi). The Ténéré's boundaries are said to be the Aïr Mountains in the west, the Hoggar Mountains in the north, the Djado Plateau in the northeast, the Tibesti Mountains in the east, and the basin of Lake Chad in the south. The central part of the desert, the Erg du Bilma, is centred at approximately 17°35′N 10°55′E. It is the locus of the Neolithic Tenerian culture.

Tell Atlas
Saharan Atlas
Saharan massifs
Peaks
Major African geological formations
Plates
Cratons and shields
Shear zones
Orogens
Rifts
Sedimentary basins
Mountain ranges

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