Endorheic basin

endorheicendorheic lakeclosed basinterminal lakeEndorheic basinssteppe lakebasinclosed lakeendorheic lakesendorrheic basin
An endorheic basin (also endoreic basin or endorreic basin) is a limited drainage basin that normally retains water and allows no outflow to other external bodies of water, such as rivers or oceans, but converges instead into lakes or swamps, permanent or seasonal, that equilibrate through evaporation.wikipedia
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Caspian Sea

CaspianCaspian regionCaspian Sea basin
Endorheic water bodies include some of the largest lakes in the world, such as the Caspian Sea, the world's largest saline inland sea.
It is an endorheic basin (a basin without outflows) located between Europe and Asia, to the east of the Caucasus Mountains and to the west of the broad steppe of Central Asia.

Open and closed lakes

exorheicopen lakeclosed lake
Endorheic regions, in contrast to exorheic regions, which flow to the ocean in geologically defined patterns, are closed hydrologic systems.
Endorheic basins fall into the category of endorheic or closed lakes, wherein waters do not drain into the ocean, but are reduced by evaporation, and/or drain into the ground.

Endorheic lake (sink)

These endorheic watersheds (containing water in rivers or lakes that form a balance of surface inflows, evaporation and seepage) are often called terminal lakes or sink lakes.
An endorheic lake, or sink lake, is a collection of water within an endorheic basin, or sink, with no visible outlet.

Drainage basin

watershedbasincatchment area
An endorheic basin (also endoreic basin or endorreic basin) is a limited drainage basin that normally retains water and allows no outflow to other external bodies of water, such as rivers or oceans, but converges instead into lakes or swamps, permanent or seasonal, that equilibrate through evaporation.
In a closed drainage basin, or endorheic basin, the water converges to a single point inside the basin, known as a sink, which may be a permanent lake, a dry lake, or a point where surface water is lost underground.

Black Sea

BlackEuxinePontus Euxinus
The Black Sea was likely such a lake, having once been an independent hydrological system before the Mediterranean Sea broke through the terrain separating the two.
During geological periods when this hydrological link wasn't present, the Black Sea was an endorheic basin, operating independently of the global ocean system (similar to the Caspian Sea nowadays).

Lake Urmia

UrmiaUrmia LakeLake Urumiyeh
Lake Urmia (, Daryâche-ye Orumiye) is an endorheic salt lake in Iran.

Aral Sea

AralLake AralSea of Aral
The Aral Sea was an endorheic lake lying between Kazakhstan (Aktobe and Kyzylorda Regions in the north) and Uzbekistan (Karakalpakstan autonomous region in the south).


Issyk KulIssyk Kul LakeIssyk-Kul Lake
Issyk-Kul (also Ysyk Köl, Issyk-Kol: Ысык-Көл, Isıq-Köl, ىسىق-كۅل, ; Иссык-Куль, ) is an endorheic lake in the northern Tian Shan mountains in eastern Kyrgyzstan.

Lake Balkhash

Lake BalkashBalkhashBalkhash Lake
It is located in Central Asia in southeastern Kazakhstan and belongs to an endorheic (closed) basin shared by Kazakhstan and China, with a small portion in Kyrgyzstan.

Tulare Lake

Tulare BasinTulare Lake BasinLaguna de Tache, Tulare Lake
A lake may be endorheic during dry years and can overflow its basin during wet years, e.g., the former Tulare Lake.
The lake was part of a 13670 mi2 partially endorheic basin, at the south end of the San Joaquin Valley, where it received water from the Kern, Tule, and Kaweah Rivers, as well as from southern distributaries of the Kings.

Tarim Basin

TarimTarim Basin deciduous forests and steppeeastern Central Asia
The Tarim Basin is an endorheic basin in northwest China occupying an area of about 1020000 km2.

Base level

River Mouthbaseleveldischarges into it
Endorheic basins constitute local base levels, defining a limit of erosion and deposition processes of nearby areas.
Base levels may be local when large landmasses are far from the sea or disconnected from it, as in the case of endorheic basins.

Salt lake

saline lakesalinesalt lakes
Over time this input of erosion products can cause the endorheic lake to become relatively saline (a "salt lake").
Salt lakes form when the water flowing into the lake, containing salt or minerals, cannot leave because the lake is endorheic (terminal).

Uvs Lake Basin

Uvs Nuur BasinUbsunur HollowUbsunur Hollow Biosphere Reserve
Uvs Lake Basin (also Uvs Nuur Basin or Ubs Nuur Basin; Увс нуурын хотгор) is an endorheic basin located on the territorial border of Mongolia and Tuva, a republic of the Russian Federation.

Sistan Basin

geographicalSīstān Basin
The Sistan Basin is an inland endorheic basin encompassing large parts of southwestern Afghanistan and minor parts of southeastern Iran, one of the driest regions in the world and an area subjected to prolonged droughts.


Chatyr-Kul LakeLake Chatyr-KulChatyr Kul
Chatyr-Kul (also Chatyr Köl, Chatyrkol, Kyrgyz: Чатыркөл) is an endorheic alpine lake in the Tian Shan mountains in At-Bashi District of Naryn Province, Kyrgyzstan; it lies in the lower part of Chatyr-Kul Depression near the Torugart Pass border crossing into China.

Qinghai Lake

Lake QinghaiKoko NorKokonor
Located in an endorheic basin in Qinghai Province, to which it gave its name, Qinghai Lake is classified as an alkaline salt lake.

Central Asia

Central AsianCentralCentral Asian Republics
Major bodies of water include the Aral Sea and Lake Balkhash, both of which are part of the huge west-central Asian endorheic basin that also includes the Caspian Sea.

Pangong Tso

Pangong LakePanggong LakeBangong Lake
Pangong Tso (Hindi: पांगोंग त्सो; ), Tibetan for "high grassland lake", also referred to as Pangong Lake, is an endorheic lake in the Himalayas situated at a height of about 4350 m. It is 134 km long and extends from India to the Tibetan Autonomous Region, China.

Onyx River

The Onyx river flows away from the ocean, an example of endorheic drainage, as the Wright Lower Glacier blocks the mouth of the Wright Valley.

Lop Nur

Lop NorLop LakeLop Nur Nuclear Weapons Test Base
Lop Nur is hydrologically endorheic— it is landbound and there is no outlet.

Aksai Chin Lake

Aksayqin Hu Lake
Aksai Chin Lake is an endorheic lake on the Aksai Chin Plateau.

Lake Van

VanVan LakeLakes Van
Lake Van is one of the world's largest endorheic lakes (having no outlet)—a volcanic eruption blocked the original outlet from the basin in prehistoric times.

Dead Sea

The Dead SeaSalt SeaDead Sea Panorama Complex
The Dead Sea is an endorheic lake located in the Jordan Rift Valley, a geographic feature formed by the Dead Sea Transform (DST).

Volga River

VolgaRiver VolgaLower Volga
It belongs to the closed basin of the Caspian Sea, being the longest river to flow into a closed basin.