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Page:Provincial geographies of India (Volume 1).djvu/46

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of barren desolation that is most familiar to the frontier officer .... Shades of delicate purple and grey will not make up for the absence of the living green of vegetation .... But with higher altitudes a cooler climate and snow-fed soil is found, and as soon as vegetation grasps a root-hold there is the beginning of line scenery. The upper pine-covered slopes of the Safed Koh are as picturesque as those of the Swiss Alps; they are crowned by peaks whose wonderful altitudes are frozen beyond the possibility of vegetation, and are usually covered with snow wherever snow can lie. In Waziristan, hidden away in the higher recesses of its great mountains, are many valleys of great natural beauty, where we find the spreading poplar and the ilex in all the robust growth of an indigenous flora .... Among the minor valleys Birmal perhaps takes precedence by right of its natural beauty. Here are stretches of park-like scenery where grass-covered slopes are dotted with clumps of deodar and pine and intersected with rivulets hidden in banks of fern; soft green glades open out to view from every turn in the folds of the hills, and above them the silent watch towers of Pirghal and Shuidar .... look down from their snow-clad heights across the Afghan uplands to the hills beyond Ghazni." (Holdich's India, pp. 81-82.)

The Suliman Range.— A well-marked mountain chain runs from the Gomal to the extreme south-west corner of the Dera Ghazi Khan district where the borders of Biluchistan, Sind, and the Panjab meet. It culminates forty miles south of the Gomal in the fine Kaisargarh mountain (11,295 feet), which is a very conspicuous object from the plains of the Dera j at. On the side of Kaisargarh there is a shrine called Takht i Suliman or Throne of Solomon, and this is the name by which Englishmen usually know the mountain, and which has been passed on to the whole range. Proceeding southwards