Astronaut Luca Parmitano captured from ISS Issyk-kul (Lake Issyk), Kyrgystan.
Issyk-Kul is an endorheic lake in the northern Tian Shan mountains in eastern Kyrgyzstan. It is the seventh deepest lake in the world, and the second largest saline lake after the Caspian Sea. Issyk-Kul means “warm lake” in the Kyrgyz language; although it is surrounded by snow-capped peaks, it never freezes. About 118 rivers and streams flow into the lake; the largest are the Djyrgalan and Tyup. It is fed by springs, including many hot springs, and snow melt. The lake has no current outlet, but some hydrologists hypothesize that the lake’s water filters deep underground into the Chu River. The lake water’s salinity is approx. 0.6% – compared to 3.5% salinity of typical seawater.
The local scenery on the ground is as follows.