Chinese Geographical Science

, Volume 28, Issue 1, pp 74–85 | Cite as

Effect of Aspect on Climate Variation in Mountain Ranges of Shennongjia Massif, Central China

  • Yi Zhang


The aim of this study was to better understand the mechanisms of regional climate variation in mountain ranges with contrasting aspects as mediated by changes in global climate. It may help predict trends of vegetation variations in native ecosystems in natural reserves. As measures of climate response, temperature and precipitation data from the north, east, and south-facing mountain ranges of Shennongjia Massif in the coldest and hottest months (January and July), different seasons (spring, summer, autumn, and winter) and each year were analyzed from a long-term dataset (1960 to 2003) to tested variations characteristics, temporal and spatial quantitative relationships of climates. The results showed that the average seasonal temperatures and precipitation in the north, east, and south aspects of the mountain ranges changed at different rates. The average seasonal temperatures change rate ranges in the north, east, and south-facing mountain ranges were from –0.0210°/yr to 0.0143°/yr, –0.0166°/yr to 0.0311°/yr, and –0.0290°/yr to 0.0084°/yr, respectively, and seasonal precipitation variation magnitude were from –1.4940 mm/yr to 0.6217 mm/yr, –1.6833 mm/yr to 2.6182 mm/yr, and –0.8567 mm/yr to 1.4077 mm/yr, respectively. The climates variation trend among the three mountain ranges were different in magnitude and direction, showing a complicated change of the climates in mountain ranges and some inconsistency with general trends in global climate change. The climate variations were significantly different and positively correlated cross mountain ranges, revealing that aspects significantly affected on climate variations and these variations resulted from a larger air circulation system, which were sensitive to global climate change. We conclude that location and terrain of aspect are the main factors affecting differences in climate variation among the mountain ranges with contrasting aspects.


regional climate variation slope aspect Shennongjia Massif One-way ANOVA global climate change 


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Copyright information

© Science Press, Northeast Institute of Geography and Agricultural Ecology, CAS and Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Earth SciencesChina University of GeosciencesWuhanChina
  2. 2.The College of Urban & Environmental SciencesCentral China Normal UniversityWuhanChina

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