The western region, the Kalahari Desert, is mainly arid, with a sandy soil, and is covered in part by dense bush.
The chief centre in the western Kalahari is Lehututu.
Crossing the Kalahari Desert, of which Livingstone gave the first detailed account, they reached the lake on the 1st of August 1849.
See also Campbell's Travels in South Africa (London, 1815), Arbousset and Daumas ' Relation d'un voyage d'exploration au nord-est de la colonie du Cap de Bonne Esperance en 1836 (Paris, 1842), and Farini's Through the Kalahari Desert (London, 1886).
The air is unusually dry, owing to the proximity of the Kalahari Desert on the west and to the interception on the east by the Drakensberg of the moisture bearing clouds from the Indian Ocean.
In the year, but it diminishes rapidly towards the centre of the plateau where it averages, at Johannesburg about 30 in., 2 while in the extreme west as the Kalahari is approached it sinks to about 12 in.
The greater part of Bechuanaland is covered with superficial deposits consisting of the sands of the desert regions of the Kalahari and the alluvium and saliferous marls of the Okavango basin.
A deposit of sinter and a calcareous sandstone, known as the Kalahari Kalk, considered by Dr Passarge to be of Miocene age, overlies a sandstone and curious breccia (Botletle Schnichten).
The old trade route to Bulawayo, which skirts the eastern edge of the Kalahari, is now rarely used.
From the scarcity of water on the main routes through the Kalahari these roads are known as " the thirsts "; along some of them wells have been sunk by the administration.
Passarge's Die Kalahari (Berlin, 1904) deals chiefly with geological and allied questions; John Mackenzie's Austral Africa, Losing it or Ruling it (London, 1887); John Mackenzie, a biography by W.
Thus we have in the northern hemisphere the Sahara desert, the deserts of Arabia, Iran, Turan, Takla Makan and Gobi, and the desert regions of the Great Basin in North America; and in the southern hemisphere the Kalahari desert in Africa, the desert of Australia, and the desert of Atacama in South America.
M., is arid and is known as the Kalahari Desert.
In the Kalahari and in the eastern lowlands (from Zululand to the Zambezi delta) most of these animals are still found, as well as the eland, wildebeest and gemsbok.
The aborigines of South Africa are represented by the Bushmen and Hottentots, now found in any racial purity only in the Kalahari and in the southern part of German South-West Africa.
The eastern boundary of German South-West Africa was fixed in 1890, the frontier running through the Kalahari Desert.
The largest of these level areas, the Great Karroo, is a dry, barren region, and a large tract of the plateau proper is of a still more arid character and is known as the Kalahari Desert.
The wide heated plains of the Sahara, and in a lesser degree the corresponding zone of the Kalahari in the south, have an exceedingly scanty rainfall, the winds which blow over them from the ocean losing part of their moisture as they pass over the outer highlands, and becoming constantly drier owing to the heating effects of the burning soil of the interior; while the scarcity of mountain ranges in the more central parts likewise tends to prevent condensation.
Similar dry winds blow from the Kalahari in the south.
The Bushmen, a race of short yellowish-brown nomad hunters, inhabited, in the earliest times of which there is historic knowledge, the land adjoining the southern and eastern borders of the Kalahari desert, into which they were gradually being forced by the encroachment of the Hottentots and Bantu tribes.