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Sulaiman Mountains

Coordinates: 30°30′N 70°10′E / 30.500°N 70.167°E / 30.500; 70.167
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Sulaiman Range
د كسې غرونه / کوه سليمان
Satellite image of a part of the Sulaiman Range
Highest point
Coordinates30°30′N 70°10′E / 30.500°N 70.167°E / 30.500; 70.167
Area6,475 km2 (2,500 sq mi)https://dgkhan.punjab.gov.pk/tribal_area
Sulaiman Range is located in Balochistan, Pakistan
Sulaiman Range
Sulaiman Range
Sulaiman Range is located in Pakistan
Sulaiman Range
Sulaiman Range
Sulaiman Range (Pakistan)
LocationZabul, Kandahar and Loya Paktia, Afghanistan
Balochistan, and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Pakistan
Parent rangeHindu Kush

The Sulaiman Mountains, also known as Kōh-e Sulaymān (Balochi:کوهِ سليمان; "Mountains of Prophet Solomon") or Da Kasē Ghrūna (Pashto: د كسې غرونه; "Mountains of Kasi"), are a north–south extension of the southern Hindu Kush mountain system in Pakistan and Afghanistan. They rise to form the eastern edge of the Iranian plateau.[1] They are located in the Kandahar, Zabul and Paktia provinces of Afghanistan, and in Pakistan they extend over the northern part of Balochistan and Waziristan as well as Kurram of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. In southwestern Punjab, the mountains extend into the two districts of Dera Ghazi Khan and Rajanpur, which are located west of the Indus River on the boundary with Balochistan. Bordering the mountains to the east are the plains of the Indus River valley, and to the north are the arid highlands of the Central Hindu Kush whose heights extend up to 3,383 metres (11,099 ft).[2] The total area on which this range spans around 6475 sq. km (2500 sq mi).[3] Together with the Kirthar Mountains on the border between Balochistan and Sindh, the Sulaiman Mountains form what is known as the Sulaiman-Kirthar geologic province.[4]

The most well-known peak of the Sulaimans is the twin-peaked Takht-e-Sulaiman or "Throne of Prophet Solomon" at 3,487 metres (11,440 ft),[5] located near Darazinda in Dera Ismail Khan Subdivision, close to the border with both South Waziristan and the Zhob District of neighboring Balochistan province. The highest peak, however, is Zarghun Ghar at 3,578 metres (11,739 ft) near Quetta, Pakistan. The next highest peak in Balochistan province is Khilafat Hill at 3,475 metres (11,401 ft), which is located in the Ziarat District of Pakistan and is famous for the Ziarat Juniper Forest, where Juniperus macropoda trees grow.[6]


The eastern edge of the Sulaiman range runs 280 miles (450 km) from the Gomal Pass in Pakistan's Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province to near the city of Jacobabad in Sindh province,[7] and further stretches into south-west Punjab.

In Afghanistan, the western edge of the range starts just beyond the northern Loya Paktia province where they meet the Koh-i-Baba range. South from there, they meet the Spin Ghar range northeast of Gardez in Paktia province, but towards west, the mountain range drops gradually in Kandahar southwest into Helmand and the Sistan Basin.[citation needed]

The Sulaiman Range, and the high plateaus to the west of it, helps form a natural barrier against the humid winds that blow from the Indian Ocean, creating arid conditions across southern and central Afghanistan to the west and north. In contrast, the relatively flat and low-lying Indus delta is situated due east and south of the Sulaimans.

Rivers that drain the Sulaimans include the Gomal River which flows eastward into the Indus River, and the Dori River and other small tributaries of the Arghandab River, which flow southwestward into the Helmand River.[citation needed]


The Sulaimans were formed as a fold and thrust belt as the Indian Plate collided into Eurasian Plate beginning about 30 million years ago.[8] The Indian Plate's counter-clockwise rotation as it collided with the Eurasian Plate resulted in the Sulaiman's having some of the most complex tectonic structures in the world,[8] including "stacking" of thrust faults.[9] The complex fault-system is capable of producing doublet earthquakes that jump to other faults - such as the 1997 Harnai earthquake in which a magnitude 7.1 earthquake triggered a 6.8 earthquake 19 seconds later on a second fault 50 kilometres away.[10]

Areas in the southern part of the range include an Imbricate fan of slices of rocks in close parallel,[8] bounded by faults on either side of each slice.[11] Along the Eastern edge of the Sulaimans is the Sulaiman Fold, an area within the Indian Plate consisting of sediment, alongside which runs the Ornach Nal-Ghazaband-Chaman Fault.[12]

Legends about Takht-e-Sulaiman[edit]

A view of Takht-e-Sulaiman from Kulachi tehsil

One of the highest peaks of the Sulaimans, the Takht-i Sulaiman ("Throne of Solomon") at 3,382 metres (11,096 ft) high, was recorded by Ibn Battuta as the Koh-i Sulaiman.[13]

In legend, it is associated with Prophet Solomon. According to the legend, Prophet Solomon climbed this mountain and looked out over the land of South Asia, which was then covered with darkness, and so turned back without descending into this new frontier, and left only the mountain which is named after him (as told by Ibn Battuta).[14]

According to another legend, Noah's Ark alighted in the Takht-i Sulaiman after the Deluge.

Another legend says that Qais Abdur Rashid, said to be the legendary ancestor of the Pashtun nation, is buried atop Takht-e-Sulaiman, and so it is also locally known as Da Kasī Ghar (د کسي غر, "Mount of Qais").

According to this legend, his descendants migrated west, north, and south from here. Some people visit the place and make animal sacrifices, usually a sheep or a goat, at the tomb of Qais to help feed the poor.[citation needed] Trips to the mountain is undertaken mostly in summer, since from late November until March the snowfall makes it difficult to climb.[15]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Akroyd, Clarissa (2014-11-17). Pakistan. Simon and Schuster. ISBN 978-1-63355-947-9.
  2. ^ Khan, Fazle Karim (1991). A Geography of Pakistan: Environment, People and Economy. Oxford University Press. ISBN 978-0-19-577411-5.
  3. ^ "Koh-e-Suleman | District Dera Ghazi Khan". dgkhan.punjab.gov.pk. Retrieved 2023-06-06.
  4. ^ "USGS Bulletin 2208-C: Sembar Goru/Ghazij Composite Total Petroleum System, Indus and Sulaiman-Kirthar Geologic Provinces, Pakistan and India". pubs.usgs.gov. Retrieved 2020-04-20.
  5. ^ Park, Graham (2017-11-09). Mountains: The origins of the Earth's mountain systems. Dunedin Academic Press Ltd. ISBN 978-1-78046-579-1.
  6. ^ Shah, Syed Ali (10 July 2013). "In Balochistan, an ancient forest battles for survival". Dawn. Retrieved 28 December 2014.
  7. ^ "Sulaiman Range | mountains, Pakistan". Encyclopedia Britannica. Retrieved 2020-08-16.
  8. ^ a b c "Forging Sulaiman Range". earthobservatory.nasa.gov. 2014-07-23. Retrieved 2020-08-16.
  9. ^ Maldonado, Florian (2011). "Summary of the Stratigraphy and Structural Elements Related to Plate Convergence of the Quetta-Muslim Bagh-Sibi Region, Balochistan, West-Central Pakistan" (PDF). USGS. Reston, Virginia: U.S. Geological Survey.
  10. ^ "Earthquakes can jump long distances". EARTH Magazine. 2016-06-29. Retrieved 2020-08-16.
  11. ^ "Science Source - Imbricate Fan, Sulaiman Range, Pakistan". www.sciencesource.com. Retrieved 2020-08-16.
  12. ^ Park, Graham (2017-11-09). Mountains: The origins of the Earth's mountain systems. Dunedin Academic Press Ltd. ISBN 978-1-78046-579-1.
  13. ^ "NASA Earth Observatory - Newsroom". Earthobservatory.nasa.gov. 6 February 2019. Retrieved 6 February 2019.
  14. ^ Battutah, Ibn (2002). The Travels of Ibn Battutah. London: Picador. p. 147. ISBN 9780330418799.
  15. ^ "Shariat and Tasawwuf". Books.themajlis.net. Retrieved 6 February 2019.

External links[edit]