LENA, a river of Siberia, rising in the Baikal Mountains, on the W. side of Lake Baikal, in 54 10' N. and 107 55' E. Wheeling round by the S., it describes a semicircle, then flows N.N.E. and N.E., being joined by the Kirenga and the Vitim, both from the right; from 113 E. it flows E.N.E as far as Yakutsk (62 N., 127 40' E.), where it enters the lowlands, after being joined by the Olekma, also from the right. From Yakutsk it goes N. until joined by its right-hand affluent the Aldan, which deflects it to the north-west; then, after receiving its most important left-hand tributary, the Vilyui, it makes its way nearly due N. to the Nordenskjold Sea, a division of the Arctic, disemboguing S.W. of the New Siberian Islands by a delta 10,800 sq. m. in area, and traversed by seven principal branches, the most important being Bylov, farthest east. The total length of the river is estimated at 2860 m. The delta arms sometimes remain blocked with ice the whole year round. At Yakutsk navigation is generally practicable from the middle of May to the end of October, and at Kirensk, at the confluence of the Lena and the Kirenga, from the beginning of May to about the same time. Between these two towns there is during the season regular steamboat communication. The area of the river basin is calculated at 895,500 sq. m. gold is washed out of the sands of the Vitim and the Olekma, and tusks of the mammoth are dug out of the delta. See G. W. Melville, In the Lena Delta (1885).
Note - this article incorporates content from Encyclopaedia Britannica, Eleventh Edition, (1910-1911)