Qilian Mountains, located on the border between northeastern Qinghai Province and Western Gansu Province, is one of the main mountains in China. It is 800 kilometers long from east to west, 200-400 kilometers wide from north to South and 4000-6000 meters above sea level. There are 3306 glaciers with an area of about 2062 square kilometers.
Qilian Mountain is known as "Wanbaoshan". It contains many kinds of minerals with good quality, such as asbestos, pyrite, chromite, copper, lead, zinc and other minerals. Babaoshan asbestos is a rare "wet spinning" raw material in China. The cold and wet climate in Qilian Mountains is conducive to the growth of pasture. In the area above 2800 meters above sea level, there are a large area of grassland, which provides a good place for the development of animal husbandry.
The Qilian Mountains are divided into two parts: the West Qilian Mountains and the East Qilian Mountains. Eastern Qilian Mountain has corridor Nanshan, Lenglongling and its branches Dahuangshan, Maya Snow Mountain and Mao Mao Mountain. The northwest is high and southeast is low, with an elevation of 2000-4500 meters; the relative elevation difference is 1000-2000 meters; the main vein is between 4000-5000 meters above sea level; and Jingtieshan, south of Jiuquan, is 5205 meters above sea level. Western Qilian Mountains include Zhaobi Mountain, Taole Mountain and Taole Nanshan: Snow Mountain, Shule Nanshan, Yema Mountain, Yema Nanshan, Danghenan Mountain , Tulgendaban Mountain and Saishteng Mountain.
The water system of Qilian Mountains has a radiation-lattice distribution. From Lenglongling to Maomaoshan, and then along Datong Mountain, Riyueshan to Southeastern Qinghai, there is a boundary between the inner and outer watersheds. The tributaries of the Yellow River on the southeast side of this line are Zhuanglang River, Datong River and Huangshui River, which belong to the outflow water system; the Shiyang River, Heihe River, Tolai River, Shule River and Danghe River on the northwest side belong to the inland water system of the Hexi Corridor; the Harteng River, Yuka River, Tataring River and Ajean River on the Northwest side. The Gole River belongs to the inland water system of Qaidam, and there are two independent inland water systems of Qinghai Lake and Hara Lake.