Geographia Polonica (1980) vol. 43

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The structure of altitudinal zonation of soils in the Donoin Dzun-nuruu Massif, Khangai Mts (Mongolia)

Alojzy Kowalkowski

Geographia Polonica (1980) vol. 43, pp. 111-124

Abstract

The specific vertical zonation of soils within the soil-geographic zones in Mon-golia is determined by the hydrothermal conditions there, which are modified by the mountain chains. In addition to altitude above sea level, exposure, slope in-clination, geographic situation and meso- and microclimatic conditions, the structure of vertical soil-zones is determined by the width, openness, and depth of the valleys separating the mountains as well as individual crests. In con-sequence of the combined action of various factors, the soil-zones tend to become asymmetric and undergo inversion (Dorzhgotov 1975; Dorzhgotov and Kowalkowski 1981). First, solifluction, fluvial and eolian processes as well as zoogenic erosion of varying intensity yield in effect a specific structure of the soil cover within each individual zone. The actual effect of each such process in soil formation depends on the geographic situation of any given mountain complex. The granodioritic crest of the Donoin Dzun-nuruu in the central part of the Khangai Mts is an example of this dependence. The crest is situated in the horizontal zone of forest permafrost brown soils with a semihumid variant of the Khangai vertical zonation structure (Dorzhgotov and Kowal-kowski 1981) within a very cool wet climatic zone (Badarch 1975).

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Alojzy Kowalkowski, Forest Research Institute, 05-550 Raszyn, Sękocin, Poland