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The subject of this article or section originates from non-canonical sources. To find out about what is considered "canon" see LOTR:Canon.

The Tûr Betark was a range of mountains in the eastern end of the Yellow Mountains, that isolated Sirayn from the lands south. Its peaks rose some 10,000 feet into the southern skies.


Few passes exist to provide safe travel to southernmost Endor, only one known trade road being in use. The most notable promontory in the area, Ghabaras, the Horsehead’s Peak, is the highest in the local chain and possesses the richest mines beneath its roots.

In mineral composition, the Tûk Betark is similar to the rest of the range. Quartz, feldspar, and mica predominate in these ancient volcanic crags. The minerals cause the summits to appear to glow in the dawn light. Sedimentary and metarnorphic rocks may also be found in the northern and southern foothills. Marble, slate, and gneiss form the boundaries between the volcanic and sedimentary layers. Spectacular colors may be seen where the rock faces are exposed. Moving north from the Tûr Betark to the desert, the color of the soils and sands change from yellow to red. This gradation is caused by a change in the mineral content of the bedrock from yellow feldspar to red iron oxide.

The Tûr Betark has the coolest climate in Sirayn. Warm moist air from the Haragaer rises quickly and drops rain on the southern slopes and uppermost peaks of the mountains, bountiously feeding the streams and rivers of the northern slopes. Rainfall, although scant on the north side of the peaks, averages 75 to 100 inches a year on the south side, and snow falk in every month on the highest peaks. The climate of the Tûr Betark is a welcome change from that of the desert. Temperatures in the upper vales rarely grow warmer than 70 degrees in the summer. However, in the winter they seldom rise above freezing. As in any mountainous area, the temperature at night is much colder than in the daytime. During especially cold years, ice may form on still water during even the summer months. 

Flora and fauna

Displaying a true alpine environment, the flora and fauna of the Tûr Betark do not exhibit the water conservation traits of the other regions. The mountain vales display a profound variety of plants, from scrub oak and juniper in the foothills to tall majestic pines. Although the flora is similar on the northem and southem slopes, the south receives more rainfall, producing lusher ground cover. To the north, short grasses cover the land between the tall pines and aspens.

  • Acaana - The plant that produces the flower used to create this poison may only be found on the highest of peaks. The flower petals are made into a deadly paste.
  • Megillos - The leaf of this small bush is used by the scouts of the Danak to increase the range of their vision.
  • Mirenna - Mirenna berries mature in the summer in cool mountain vales. Harvested when ripe, the berries cure concussion damage.
  • Mook - The berries of a tree from the juniper family are collected and processed by the Danak. When ingested they act as an antidote for respiratory poisons.

The Tûr Betark provides a very comfortable habitat for many animals. Ample rain and forage allow a large variety of herbivorous and camivorous species to co-exist. Rodents, sheep, goats, badgers, hedgehogs, and other non-predators provide an abundant food supply for a stable population of carnivores. Foxes, mountain lions, and hawks prune the extensive herbivorous species to manageable size.

  • Lautan - The lautan is a large rodent that lives throughout the Tûr Betark. Having short hair and ears, the obnoxious animals are a bane to travellers in the mountains. They eat through packs, spoil food, and generally make a nuisance of themselves. Lautani are very stupid and extremely difficult to drive off. The Danak say that even hitting one of them on the head with a rock rarely affects their functioning.
  • Marnetta - These playful otter-like creatures live in the foothills and forests of the Tûr Betark. Viewed as a sign of good-luck by the Danak and the Sirani, they are rarely killed. Like otters, the marnetta (some are as big as large dogs) are extremely mischievous, although they pervade an air of pure innocence.
  • Tasidii - Related to the Great Falcons of Mirkwood, the tasidii live only in the most rernote areas of the Tûr Betark. Possessing twenty-five foot wingspans, they can serve as steeds to a skilled rider. Only magical means will effectively tie the loyalties of one of the fierce tasidii to a human.
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