The Armenian Plateau is one of the largest units of the young mountainous areas of Western Asia (nearly 400 sq.k), which is located between Black Sea, Lowlands of Transcaucasia, Iranian Plateau and Jezire low Plateaus (Armenian Mesopotamia). It has borders from South- Eastern part with Iranian, and from West- Anatolian plateaus.
The Armenian Plateau is a united and unique mountainous country of complicated and diverse forms of relief combined with supremacy of average high mountains.
The highest peak of the Armenian Plateau is Masis (Ararat) mountain with 5165m height; the average height is 1700 m, which exceeds the average height of the Iranian and Anatolian Highlands.
The boundary upland mountain ranges of the Armenian Plateau are archway systems: Eastern Pontos, Armenian (Eastern) Taurus, Kordvats Mountains, Transaraxian mountain ranges, Lesser Caucasus, which include Central volcanic, Vaspourakan and Uzun Cailla (Haik Minor) structural highlands.
Mountain system of Eastern Pontos (Dzanik, Diresoun, Dyu Moushkhane, Zigana, Trapizon, Lazistan) is located in the North of the Armenian Plateau, between Black Sea, the valleys of Kelkit (Wolf river) and Chorokh with more than 400 kilometers height and 60-100 km width. It consists of Western and Eastern key mountain chains. The highest peak of the mountain system is 3937m (mountain Kajqar).
Armenian (Eastern) Tavros is the southern mountain system of the Plateau, which stretches from the river Jeyhan to the river Bitlis with the direction of collateral. The mountains Nourhak, Malatia, Arghni, Ilidza and Sasoun are popular ones. The highest pick is Maroutasar (2967m).
Kordvats Mountains, mountain gaps of Jashour and Poushkin, Yeranos mountains, mount of Ashocq are the more upland encircling chains of mountain Ara (3500-4000) located between lakes of Van and Urmia and concavity of Mesopotamia with 220-300 km length and till 200 km width. The following mountains are famous as well: Mokats, Agarak, Aghbak, Kotour, Zoghasar. The highest pick is 4168m (mountain Dzilo).
The Transaraxian mountain system consists of the average basin of Arax and is divided into 2 parts: left shore (in The Republic of Armenia and Nakhichevan) and right shore (in The Islamic Republic of Iran). In this territory the mountain chain Zangezour is the most important one (130 km) along with the mountains of Vayk, Bargoushat and Meghri, and the Iranian Karadagh in the Islamic Republic of Iran. The highest pick is 3904 m (Kapoutdzoogh).
The north-eastern mountain system of the Armenian Plateau is the Small Caucasus, which stretches from Arax Valley (Meghri canyon) to Black Sea with 600 km length and 50-90 km width. Rising in the south-western part it reaches up to 3724 m in the pick of Gyamish.
The Armenian volcanic plateau is the central region of the Armenian Plateau and occupies 100 thousand square kilometers in dimension.
The following mountain chains (Eroutesh, Javakhq, Aragats, Karmir Porak, Geghama, Vardenis, Masyac, Tsaghkac, Byurakn) are located in the north-eastern, north-western and on the parallel axes.
The huge and extinct volcanoes such as Ararat, Aragats, Sipan, Nemrout, Small Ararat, Tondrak are one of the most important elements of the plateau, the concavities Karno (Erzroum), Erznka (Erzindjan), Manazkert (Malazkirt), Basen (Pasinlar), Alashkert (Eleskirit), Ararat etc., which are mainly located along the long rivers of plateau (Araks, Yeprat and Aratsani). The lakes Van, Urmia and Sevan are not included in those zones.
The Armenian plateau is popular with Ozoun Yayla (which is in the territory of Turkey) and Vaspourakan plateaus.
Translated by Anahit Hakobyan