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The Karachay-Cherkess Republic , Teberda

Teberda Nature Reserve

The Teberda Nature Reserve was established to preserve the unique environment of the two flora zones and the junction of the western and central Caucasus.  This region supports a rich biodiversity of flora and fauna.  The Teberda Nature Reserve is among the top ten most visited nature reserves in Russia.

The reserve is located on the northern slopes of the Greater Caucasus mountain range, specifically in the easternmost part of the Northwestern Greater Caucasus highlands, where the transition begins to the Central Caucasus.

The Teberda zone of the Natural Reserve is located on the northern slopes of the Greater Caucasus mountain range in the upper reaches of the Teberda valley. The Arkhyz zone of the natural reserve is located in Kizgych valley (Bolshoy Zelenchuk river head).

The area occupied by the reserve is typical mountain terrain, ranging fr om 1,260 to 4,047 meters above sea level. About 85% of the territory is at an altitude above 2,000 meters.

Thirty rivers and streams flow through the natural reserve. Within the Teberda zone, all of these rivers are feeders of the Teberda river. Within the Arkhyz zone, they feed the  Kyzgych river which in turn flows into the Bolshoy Zelenchuk river. The rivers flow from glaciers, snowfields, and lakes. Flowing on the steep slopes, they often form rapids and powerful waterfalls.

One of excursion routes in the reserve includes a visit of Chuchkhursky waterfall, which is 6 kilometers from the Dombay meadow. This is one of the easiest hikes for tourists.  The waterfall is 12 meters high.

The natural reserve has 157 lakes with total area 1.6 square kilometers. Most of the lakes are small, but there are a few large ones: Klukhorskoe, Goluboe Murudzhinskoe, Chernoe Murudzhinskoe. Some of these lakes may be as deep as 30-50 meters.

One of easiest hiking routes goes to Badukskie lakes.

The glaciers in the vicinity of the Teberda reserve are an integral part of the high-mountain terrain.  These are valuable natural storages of fresh water. The water in these glaciers has been accumulating for many decades.  Melt water from glaciers and snowfields gives rise to almost all the rivers and streams. In total there are 109 glaciers in the nature reserve.

In Teberda Reserve there are 46 species of mammals, including those typical of the taiga, but also endemic species that live only in the Caucasus.  The Caucasian goat (in the Red Book of the Karachaeve-Cherkess Republic) is the most numerous inhabitant of the rocky areas in the highlands. This animal is on the emblem of the nature reserve. There is another rare species of Russian fauna in the nature reserve: a bison that has been listed as endangered for a long time already.  To date, the bison (which number about 20) have reclaimed much of the reserve, while some individuals or groups of them even explore the lands in neighboring areas.

Of large carnivores living in mountain forests, the brown bear is perhaps the most numerous. Bears have remained in the Karachaevo-Cherkess Republic, wh ere they can be found on the slopes of the Greater Caucasus mountain range from Bolshaya Laba river head and its feeders in the west, to Elbrus in the east.  In the reserve, bears live in a variety of places, even high up in the mountains at the edge of the glaciers and snowfields.  The Caucasian brown bear is not aggressive and only in exceptional cases attacks domestic animals. When encountering humans, they tend to run away as quick as possible.

About 219 species of birds inhabit the reserve. Some of them live here throughout the year, while others come here for the summer, nest, and hatch their young. After growing, the young stock fly to wintering areas thousands of kilometers away.

Teberda Nature Reserve is the most visited of all Russian reserves. More than 100,000 thousand tourists visit the reserve each year.

Ministry of Tourism, Resorts, and Youth Policy of the Karachaevo-Cherkess Republic

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Phone number: (8-87879) 5-18-08
Address: The Karachaevo-Cherkess Republic, Teberda, Baduksky Lane, Building 1

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