15,000 square kilometres of this dramatic landscape were formed during the Ice Age. The terrain rises evenly from the beautiful fjords to almost 2,000 metres above sea level – from coniferous to deciduous forest and through the Hallingdal Valley with Hemsedal and Geilo.
The region is flat in the southwest and hilly in the north before it plunges into narrow valleys and fjords at sea level. To the west there is the Hardangerfjord. To the north the Flåm Valley, the Undredal Valley, the Nærøydalen Valley, the Aurlandsdalen Valley and Lærdal descend into the Sognefjord – the longest fjord in Norway. Three quarters of the region is 900 to 1,900 metres above sea level and there are several glaciers and waterfalls here. Hardangervidda is one of the largest high mountain plateaus in Europe with a treeless, arctic climate. Hardangerjøkelen, Hallingskarvet and Reineskarvet are tilted thrust nappes……………
The Tien Shan Mountains are the largest mountain range in Asia, in surface area; length (2800km); and width (at one point reaching 800 km wide), with a total of 40 peaks over 6000m. It stretches across several countries and about much of the system lies in the territory of the Kyrgyz Republic. Extending over 2800km from the Chatkal range just East of Tashkent to Urumchi, (beyond which it rises again as the Bogdo Ola Range), they are usually described as being divided into Northern, Western, Eastern, Central and Inner ranges and most of them exhibit typical ‘alpine’ features. It is the central portion, south-east of Lake Issyk-kul which contains the very high mountain peaks such as Khan Tengri and Peak Pobeda, closely grouped together along ridges that stretch east-to-west. The area surrounding the Enilchek Glacier has two peaks over 7000 meters, Pobeda and Khan Tengri), 23 higher than 6000 meters including 3 virgin peaks and 80 more peaks up to 6000 meters including 14 virgin peaks….