Volga River: where flows, length, source, mouth and nature of current

The geographical location of


Volga is considered the central water highway of Russia, flowing through its European part through the Russian plain. The river carries its waters across 15 subjects of Russia: from Tver Oblast to the Republic of Tatarstan.

Different peoples called it Ra, or Rav — “shedraya”, Athel — “river of rivers”, “great river”, Bulga. The usual Russian name was recorded in the 12th century in the chronicle “The Tale of the Time Years”. Experts believe that it came from Old Slavonic “vlga” — “moisture” (as still said “vologa”).

The length

of the

Volga-Matushka, as it is popularly called, flows between marshes, steppes and forests for 3530 km. Together with 151,000 rivers, streams and temporary watercourses that make up its basin, it irrigates fields, supplies cities and villages with electricity, water and fish over an area of 1.36 million square kilometres. That’s about a third of the European part of

Where is the source of the 

beginning of the Volga River is considered to be a small spring in the territory of the state reserve on the of elevation. The key hits in the protected forests near the village of Volga-Verkhovye, near Tver. Spring water in it is the color of strong brewed tea, but transparent and rarity clean.

At its source, the Volga is a small river. Flowing through the Russian Plain, it receives the waters of Kostroma, Oka, Sunzhi, Sura, Kama — only 200 tributaries. And through that, it becomes so powerful and wide.

Where is the estuary

Many mistakenly believe that the Volga flows into the Caspian Sea. It does, but only in part. The mouth of the Volga is just below Kazan, it connects to the Kama, and already it flows into the Caspian Sea.

The character of

Volga constantly loops, but if you look at the map, you can see that the halfway point it passes mainly on direction from west to east. Then the city of Kazan turns sharply and tends mostly from north to south. Its entire course is divided into three parts: the Upper Volga (from the source to the fall of the Oka), the Middle Volga (from the Oka to the flow of the Kama) and the Lower Volga (from the Kama to the mouth).

Its shores are gentle and low, then precipitous and high. Since the late 30s of the last century Volga has been actively used as a source of hydropower. At the erection of 9 large reservoirs, an area equal to Switzerland fell under water. At the same time her current became slow, the average speed is only 2-6 km/h. Because of this, the Volga is more like a huge lake.

The construction of reservoirs and hydroelectric power stations had a significant impact on the ecology. The flora and fauna of the Volga basin were disturbed. Thus, in the Volga there are actively growing blue-green algae, releasing poisons in the process of activity and poisoning river inhabitants. Occasions of different mutations in fish are not uncommon.

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