Relief and soils
The “Cape Govena” and “Lavrova Bay” cluster areas of Koryaksky reserve are situated in the area of the Koryakskoye upland, and “Parapolsky Dale” is in Penzhino-Anadyrskaya lowland.
The “Parapolsky Dale” area’s axial part extends along Parapolskaya depression – a vast lowland made up by loose sedimentary precipitations. Parapolskaya lowland is swamped very much, and contains a network of wide river valleys (2-13 km).
Koryakskoye upland combines mountain massifs and ridges of fold-block origin. The ridges and massifs are extensively decompounded by river and glacial erosion, having rift-like depressions and deep intermountain troughs. The relief of Koryakskoye upland is characterized by deep dissection (from 400 to 1000 m), heights of 2000-2500 m in its axial part and modern glaciation with the total area of approximately 200 km².
Koryakskoye upland consists of a system of mountain chains dissected by deep trough valleys. Intra-mountain troughs of Koryakskoye upland have the gently-sloped hills, small ridges, accumulative relief of lacustrine-alluvial plains with a great number of lakes the total area of which can be up to 0,5, more rarely to 1 km², with the traces of late Pleistcene glaciation in the form of sandrs and moraines. Their peripheral parts adjacent to the slopes are covered with a veneer of modern aggregations of deluvial and alluvial-proluvial origin.
The tectonic structure of the Koryakskaya folding zone is complicated and diverse. Within its territory various structures are developed: from horst-block uplifts and anticlinoriums to downfolds, linear synclinals and superimposed depressions. Great complexity of geological and tectonic structure of the Koryak mountain land determines the diversity of the relief forms and hydrological textures. The Koryaksky Ridge is a very young formation with Upper Cretaceous Tertiary volcanism manifestations.
The “Parapolsky Dale” area and the two other areas - “Cape Govena” and “Lavrova Bay” – are situated in different landscapes, therefore different types of soils are characteristic of them. In Parapolsky Dale they are mostly peaty, marshy, cryogenic soils. In the “Cape Govena” and “Lavrova Bay” areas they are peaty soils of plain and mountain tundras: soddy, loamy, cryogenic soils under the thickets of dwarf pine; fragmental and skeletal soils on steep slopes and bald peaks under the areas of dry tundras and rocky barrens with spotty vegetation.
On the whole, the soils of the reserve, although formed in severe climatic conditions under the influence of tundra and forest tundra vegetation, have satisfactory natural hydro-physical and biochemical properties for normal functioning of ecosystems.