30 JOUENEYS IN PERSIA LETTER xvii general useless for irrigation purposes, but some day it may be turned to account as a great " water power." Its windings, dictated "by the singular formation of the moun- tain ranges (for I reject the idea of it having " carved " its channel), are almost phenomenal. After flowing south- east for a hundred miles from its source, it mates an acute bend, flows for fifty miles to the sjouth-west, and then making another fantastic turn it flows in an exactly opposite direction to that of its earlier course, proceeding north-west to Shuster for a hundred miles. It is calculated that the distance from the BLuh-i-Kang to Shuster as the crow flies is seventy-five miles, but the distance travelled by the waters of the Karun is 250 miles, with an aggregate'fall of 9000 feet. Besides being fed on its journey through the Bakh- tiari country by many mountain-side fountain springs of pure fresh water, as well as by salt streams and springs, it receives various tributaries, among the most important of which are the Ab-i-Bazuft and a stream which, though known locally under various names, may be called from the Chigakhor basin in which it rises the Ab-i-Chig- akhor, which makes a course of ninety miles to get over a distance of twenty; the Darkash Warkash flowing in from the Chahar Mahals near Ardal, the Dinarud rising in the fair valley of Gorab, and the Ab-i-Cherri or Duab. This mountain range, the Zard Kuh, in whose steep side at a height of over 8000 feet the Sar-i-Cheshmeh- i-Kurang wells up so grandly, is rather a series of rock. summits and precipices than a range of mountains. In late June its naked shelves and battlements upbore great snow-fields, and its huge rifts or passes—the Gil-i-Shah, nearly 11,700 feet in altitude, and the Pambakal, 11,400 —were full of snow. But even, in four days it melted rapidly, and probably by August little remains except a few patches, in the highest and most sunless of the rifts.