Iron Peaks

The Iron Peaks are not as old as the Seamist Mountains, as treacherous as the Drachenaur Mountains, or as high as the Spearmarch Range, but the peaks have their own particular charm for the dwarves. The mountains are steep, the crevasses deep, and the minerals, including iron, are unrivaled by any in Cerilia. The chain extends from Baruk-Azhik through the Chimaeron. The uplands drop into a great wooded valley as Rivenrock gives way to Iseare.
Dwarves have generally favored the northern portion of the peaks, as the mineral wealth is greater there. One of Cerilia's several dwarven realms, Baruk-Azhik lies on the northern third of the peaks. Dwarves have mined further south in centuries past, but now largely avoid the southern peaks. When Khinasi settled the land, which they called Dhafrane, they were only interested in the coast and its fine harbors. At that time the dwarves occupied the highlands. Over time the dwarves exhausted some of the mines, at least near the surface, and their attachment to the land declined. The coming of the the Chimaera was the last reason for dwarves to leave the southern peaks entirely, at least as far as humans know. What transpires deep within the earth is known only to the dwarves and other creatures that dwell in the deeps.
The Iron Peaks are rugged and forbidding to human observers and are generally regarded as impassible without dwarven guides. Armies and merchant caravans have not had much success in crossing the peaks without the aid of the dwarves. As such the Gulf of Coeranys has occupied the role of highways between Anuire and Khinasi, while the peaks act as a barrier between them.
The western slopes of the mountain range enjoys a very temperate climate, and the foothills of Bran's Retreat, Cliff's Lament, and Careine enjoy a climate not much different than Coeranys. The conditions are quite good for farming, but the rocky soil makes human techniques impractical. The dwarves, however to not find this to be an obstacle. To the untrained eye, the foothills in Baruk-Azhik appear to be pristine, but the dwarves, and what elves enter the peaks, can spot the farms of the dwarves with their root crops and wild grains. The eastern provinces are at a much higher altitude, and are battered by the seasonal winds from the eastern ocean. Rains, high winds, and in winter, bitter cold make the spine of the peaks dangerous. The steep mountainsides and deep crevasses make the terrain especially dangerous.
The rains and melting snows of the eastern slopes drain into a great lake known to the Brecht as the Khurinlach. The peaks of Promontory and Ruorkhe fall steeply as one approaches the lake. The waterfalls of the mountain streams are remarkable to behold. Land's Victory approaches the lake in bluffs of a hundred to a hundred and fifty feet in height. The eastern edge of the lake is very rocky, and in some places, the mountains rise right out of the lake. The lake drains into the Khurinbyrn River which empties south into the Gulf of Coeranys.

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