The Geography of Ninovan
The subcontinent of Ninovan stretches approximately 700 miles north to south and varies greatly north to west. It’s North Boundary is the Southland River and The Howling Sea To the south it ends at the Great Wilds. It is bounded on east and west by oceans, thought Ninovan the country only extends as far east as the backbone of the Zaltana Mountains.
Ninovan can be subdivided into three general areas. These areas are defined by their elevation, and much of the history, politics and culture of Ninovan are defined by these areas. These are the Low Desert, the Nyavu Table and the Zaltana Mountains.
The Low Desert
The Low Desert makes up the western and southern portions of Ninovan. The elevation of the Low Desert ranges from sea level to 2,500’. It is the domain of the Hokam Nation. The Low Desert is hot, dry and sparsely populated. The greatest relief from the arid conditions comes on the slopes of the many volcanoes that dot the area, part of a larger chain, The Firearc, that stretches all the way to the arctic. They recieve the bulk of the rain in the Low Desert and sustain the largest settlements. The Low Desert is home to the only semi-permanent settlement of Sand Elves, those elves displaced centuries ago from Old Terusc during the Reckoning.
The Nyavu Table
The Nyavu Table (or, “The Table”, as it is locally known) rises suddenly out of the desert, gaining nearly 3,000 feet in less than 10 miles. Atop the rise is a relatively flat plateau that stretches to the base of the Zaltanas. The Table recieves approximately twice the rainfall of the Low Desert but it is still very arid. Within it’s expanse are mountain ranges and areas of deep, narrow, maze-like canyonlands. The temperatures are less extreme, ranging from the high 90s in the summer to freezing in the winter.
The more stable climate is the reason it is home to approximately 75% of the population of Ninovan. The Table hosts the most populous Nation, Azani, as well as the largest city, Qalachi.
The Zaltana Mountains
The Zaltanas are the backbone of the continent and form the eastern edge of Ninovan and have a climate that more closely resembles central and northern Mulraan. Forested valleys give way to alpine cirques littered with shimmering lakes, cascading waterfalls and abundant wildlife. Long, cold winters keep these mountains sparsely populated for the most part, though many settlements have popped up around mining or lumber camps. The largest city is Qayanet, also called Laketown. It rests on shores of the largest of these alpine lakes, Pavati Lake and is the capitol of the Nation of Lupa.