Santharian Development

Santharian World Development => Places and Map Design => Topic started by: Azhira Styralias on 30 July 2008, 05:36:38



Title: Kalta'Goor - Isle of the Snow Drake
Post by: Azhira Styralias on 30 July 2008, 05:36:38
1st Revision Edits in Yellow

Overview:

The island known as Kalta'Goor is but one of many unexplored regions of Northern Sarvonia. The name "Kalta'Goor" is orcen, meaning "Ice Fangs", probably because of the twin mountain peaks that dominate much of the island. Located in the Ice Sea, northwest of the peninsula of Caaehl'heroth, much of the historical details surrounding this island are a mystery. Contemporary research has uncovered several links between the island and the Aeh'os'th'er'oc orcen clan. One intrepid researcher, Ihea Miwone, a Kasumarii expert on ice drakes, spent over ten years and partook in six expeditions to Kalta'Goor exploring the island. She was convinced that the rare Guldorian Snow Drake, also known as the "White Drake" and the "Ivorine Drake" made their home on the island. Ihea discovered far more than she thought possible and her work answered a few of the many questions surrounding the mysterious island.

Description:

According to Ihea's journals, Kalta'Goor is largely a land of ice and snow. The island is dominated by two mountain peaks. The name "Kalta'Goor" is thought originate from a now extinct orcen dialect called "Org'kom'gh". It roughly translated means "Ice Fangs". The sea surrounding the island is thick ice and a ship wouldn't make it within six to eight peds of the shore without having to stop before crashing into the ice shelf. The sky is perpetually overcast with light snow falling at all hours of the day and night.

When stepping foot on the island, the snow is deep, sometimes up to half a ped. Travel is slow through the thick snow, which is pristine white and undisturbed of footprints or trails. Immediately, the two mountain peaks can be seen rising up into the clouds from anywhere on the island. The tips of which are forever hidden in the thick, grey clouds that hang low over the ground.

As one moves farther inland, the snow maintains an estimated thickness of between one palmspan to half a ped. A traveler must forge their way slowly into the snow while hiking cautiously over the stony ground underneath. Snowshoes are recommended when traveling over such deep snow as fortunately, the cold and damp sleet hardens the snow turning it into a hard surface. In her journals, Ihea found little evidence of any kinds of bodies of water such as lakes or streams except for a small half frozen stream on the western side of the island. It is surmised that, much like the western stream, any other bodies of water would no doubt be frozen underneath many palmspans of snow and ice.

Surrounding the island, the sea is very icy with large pieces of broken ice floating randomly in the water. Approximately four to seven peds from the shore, there is a solid, unbroken shelf of ice that renders any traveling ship impossible to get close to. Only by leaving the ship and walking over the ice can a traveler get to the shore.

The eastern shores of the island are dominated with high, jagged rocks that protrude from the snow. It is here that one of the mountain peaks slope down close to the water line. The jagged rocks make foot travel difficult as the surface is unstable with many rocky pits and spikes.

The southern shore is marked with six ice caves that begin about four peds from the shore line. Three of the six caves run deep into the mountain and have low ceilings with long, sharp fingers of ice that stab downward. Traveling through the caves is hazardous because if one tries to stand fully, the ice spikes would easily stab into one's skull. The ground surface is a mixture of ice and solid soil. Without a source of light, it is impossible to travel further into the caves for more than six to eight peds.

The western shoreline is mostly flat ground with a few boulder piles sitting randomly near the ice shore. The mountainside here is not as smooth as the other areas and contains many high cliffs and rough surfaces. Most likely, the boulders are a result of a landslide that looks to have sheared away some of the mountainside. The snow here is quite deep and almost impossible to cross in the high winter months. Along a running section of area, the snow is not quite as deep, perhaps just a few palmspans. The shallow snow runs up into the mountain side into a narrow valley. Upon digging through the snow, a stream can be found, half frozen and covered with a thin sheet of ice.

The northern seed of the island is quite impossible to explore fully as it contains the deepest snows and there is hardly any flat surface to cross. The mountainside comes up directly to the shoreline leaving very little flat area. However, a single ice cave can be seen from the western side of the island, but access to the cave has proven impossible as it is located high up the mountainside.

Location:

Kalta'Goor is located northwest of the peninsula of Caaeh'heroth in Northern Sarvonia. The island is part of a group of islands and peninsulas that surround the Ice Sea. To the east of Kalta'Goor is the Icelands of Aeh'Os'th'er'oc, where the rare ice dragons makes their home. To the southwest is a very tiny island called Krooj, while a small distance further south is Kalta'Goor's sister island, Karma’Goor, which contains the ruins of a possible orcen village called Hol'mangar. The name Karma'Goor roughly translated means "Ice Maw" in ancient Org'kom'gh. An old story persists among the Osther-Oc that Hol'mangar was a dragon aviary during the Third Sarvonian War, or even possibly during the War of the Chosen.

People:

There is little evidence that Kalta'Goor is, or was, inhabited by any specific race or tribe. The island is so remote and largely inaccessible that it is doubtful that any race could travel there easily. And, there is little evidence of any flora or fauna that could subsist anyone living there.

One possible theory brought forth by the researcher Ihea Miwone is that the island once was visited by a little documented orc tribe called the Aeh'Os'th'er'oc, for which the nearby icelands are named. The Aeh'Os'th'er'oc are thought to be a small clan related to the much larger Osther-Oc tribe who dwell on the mainland Caaehl'heroth. It is possible that at one time, the Aeh'Os'th'er'oc had perhaps a small village or outpost on Kalta'Goor during the past.

Ihea found such evidence when she crossed the eastern ice shelf of the island. There, half buried in snow and ice, were blocks of ice and a few stone monuments protruding from the ground. Ihea surmised that perhaps whoever may have settled the island long ago carved for themselves shelters made of ice blocks and snow. The stone boulders were carved with runes and lettering thought to be ancient Org'kom'gh. The island of Karma'Goor to the south contains some ancient ruins that are more extensive known as Hol'mangar, so it would be safe to assume that Kalta'Goor was also settled. One of the biggest unanswered questions is: what happened to the settlement? Why did the Aeh'Os'th'er'oc abandon the islands? Did the snow drakes drive the orcs out?

Climate:

The climate of the island of ice is not a varied one. Being located so far north, the island is trapped in perpetual winter with even the summer season bringing very little sunshine and warmth. Snow fall is constant all over the island with heavy snow falling during seven months of the year along with freezing rain and low fog. Summer months bring warmer temperatures (still very cold however) with winter months bringing harsh, blizzard like conditions with biting winds that blow from the Ice Sea.

Flora:

The near constant snowfall and overcast skies make for a harsh environment for many kinds of flora that would require sun and hardy soil. Hence, one would not find many kinds of green flora on the island.

However, one such unique flower does grow on the island and that is the Icetear fern. The fern is unique in that it can grow in cold, hard soil and the seedling pushes its way through the snow to produce fantastic translucent blooms. The leaves of the fern are a shimmering light blue in colour with pure white stalks. The fern requires little to no sunshine and the cold climate enhances its blooms.

Shiel snow drake picture 27 (http://stuff.santharia.com/sheil/27.jpg) - A snow drake is perched atop a shelf of ice hunting his favorite prey, the pinnip seal.

Fauna:

Kalta'Goor is known to be one of the few locations where the rare and beautiful snow drakes are known to live. Although no nests have ever been seen or studied, Ihea had the pleasure to watch a snow drake hunt their sole source of food - the pinnip seal.

The Guldorian Snow Drake is covered along its eight-ped-long-body in cyhalloian snow-coloured fur, rather than the hard scales or thick skins typical to drakes, undoubtedly an aid against the colder climates and higher altitudes it will sometimes fly to. There are no noticeable horns or spikes on the body, but it does have two delicate looking ears that tip back from its head. The eyes are golden, with deep black pupils set in an elongated face. The four black claws contrast rather sharply with the whiteness of the beast, and the paws are almost hand-like in shape. The wings span somewhere between sixteen and twenty peds, and rather than the thin skin of most drakes they sport long white feathers, making them very capable fliers.

The Snow Drake Dines

"During my third expedition to Kalta'Goor, my team of explorers consisted of an Osther'Oc guide, two dwarven adventurers and a Erpheronian ranger. We ventured around the east side of one of the mountains, keeping low to the shore. I heard barking noises, like a dog, only deeper and longer. We waited in between two large boulders and watched as a group of pinnip seals crawled upon an ice shelf to bask. Several of them had fish in their mouths and were quickly devouring them. The seal's social gathering was truly astounding to watch but not as much as what happened within the next few moments.

I felt a strange sensation along the back of my neck as if something was watching me. I peered upwards and was met with only the overcast sky and the blowing snow stinging my eyes. I ignored the feeling and continued to watch the seals. Suddenly, there was motion above. I instinctively lowered my head and gasped. A rush of white feathers came diving from the clouds and landed amidst the group of seals. Dumbfounded, I could only stare as my first snow drake sighting had come at last.

The magnificent beast was almost pure white, covered in what looked like feathers. It appeared as a bird with the head of a large lizard. Its talons were long and curved much like a Kasumarii moonblade. The drake emitted a screech that pierced the cold wind and made me wince in pain. The seals scattered in a panicked rush to the open waters to escape the drake, but one was not so fortunate. The drake had underneath it a lone pinnip seal still struggling for its life. The beast gave one long screech that sent chills up my spine despite the cold before tearing into its prey with hungry abandon.

I waited and watched the drake bloody its pristine feathers with the seal's meat before it took wing and disappeared above the clouds. The seal's remains, what little was left, was abandoned. It took me several moments to make myself move after watching the spectacle and when I finally did move on, it was far away from that ice shelf as it was an obvious hunting spot for the drake and I did not want to be mistaken for another drake meal."


Clash of the Dragons

"My sixth and final journey to Kalta'Goor was my most memorable. It was this time I proved that not only do the snow drakes inhabit the island, but perhaps the great ice dragon does as well.

I sat upon a cliff of ice hoping to catch a glimpse of another successful hunt. For several hours, I had tried to locate a snow drake nest but had been unsuccessful. It would appear that the snow drake nests high above in the very peaks of the mountains, far beyond the reach of most men and beasts. Hence why there have been no documented sightings of the drake's nest and eggs. It was just as well as I had no tools with which to make such a climb anyhow.

Again, the sound of the drake's screech met my ears, even over the howl of the wind. The screech had become a normal sound to me but rarely did I ever see the drake that made the screech. The sounds always seemed to come from the perpetual overcast sky above. I heard a second and third screech followed by a deeper, louder noise. It was not a screech, but almost like a roar.

Startled, I backed against the rock wall behind me and looked up hoping to see the source of the roar. I was rewarded not a moment later when a massive beast came soaring down from the clouds. It was large than a snow drake and had ice blue scales over its body with leathery looking wings that stretched almost twenty peds from end to end. It was a pale blue colour and glanced at me with piercing dark blue eyes.

I gasped as I realized what I was seeing. An adult ice dragon. I was simply shocked to see such a wondrous beast on the island, but then was struck with a thought. What was an ice dragon doing among the snow drakes? Was there an ice dragon nest on the island? Was the dragon from the Caaehl'heroth mainland? I soon had my answer and, as most always, nature spoke for me.

The ice dragon had clutched within its claws a large stryker shark. The huge fish was thick and well muscled but it could only squirm in the dragon's powerful clutches. The dragon began to feed when suddenly a symphony of screeches seemed to come from all directions. I counted six snow drakes diving out of the clouds to attack the ice dragon.

The behemoth bellowed a challenge and took flight. The snow drakes circled around the dragon, dipping in and out, each time biting the dragon's skin. The larger beast whirled and circled, exhibiting dexterity unheard of in a creature its size. Its jaws snapped once and a snow drake was gone. The others screeched and nipped at the dragon all the while the larger drake whipping its tail and launching its head around in hopes of snatching one of the pestering snow drakes.

The aerial battle continued for a few moments before the dragon landed atop its kill and attempted to take it up with it. The drakes descended upon the dragon with talons and beaks in a courageous display of battle. Never before has a documented battle been witnessed between a drake and a dragon. The dragon was covered in bloody wounds while the group of six drakes was not down to three. The obvious ferociousness of the snow drakes was more than a match for a single ice dragon and the larger beast knew it. It backed away and flew off, its great wings carrying it higher and higher until it vanished among the clouds.

The remaining snow drakes screeched and called and feasted on the dragon's abandoned kill. I sat back and sighed, wondering how to possibly document such a fabulous spectacle. I realized that my study of Kalta'Goor was at an end. The harsh environment of the island was not suited for humans. The island would remain a snow drake home for the foreseeable future."


It is evident therefore that the pinnip seal makes a home on the island and serves as a food source for the snow drake. One of the seal's favourite prey is the silverpearl fish. These fish thrive in the ice waters around the Ice Sea and provide the seals with a hearty meal. The seals store thick fat on their bodies that enable them to withstand the cold climate. Ihea Miwone suggests in her brief research that the drakes do not hunt the seals often and perhaps the drakes only feed irregularly throughout their lives. The seal sightings on the island are numerous, which suggests that the island is perhaps one of the breeding ground locations for the seals.

Resources:

The island of Kalta'Goor has no natural resources to speak of as there is no evidence that the ancient Aeh'Os'th'er'oc tribe ever produced any natural resources from the island. However, Ihea surmises that the Icetear fern could possibly be used as a magic reagent and be quite valuable in performing spells from the Ximaxian water school of magic. The fern's cold properties and unique way of survival among the cold climate of the island could perhaps be studied further by a trained herbariumist.

The island also contains many varieties of crystals buried under the mountains that could be mined and used in jewelry, as reagents or for other uses. Ihea Miwone found several such crystals crushed and scattered around some of the ice caves, perhaps as a result of the snow drake's digging through the ice to make a nest. The crystals were multi-colored in hues of blue, white, purple, and deep black.

Myth/Lore:

As previously mentioned, the name Kalta'Goor is thought mean "Ice Fangs" in the now little used orcen dialect called Org'kom'gh. According to the lore of the reclusive orcs of the Icelands of Aeh'os'th'er'oc, it is told that the island was long inhabited by dragons. The story goes that after the War of the Chosen, the remaining dragons fled to the nearby island and dwelt there away from civilization. The orcen colonists settled Karma'Goor for a time, and aptly named it "Ice Fangs" in honor of the twin mountains that dominate much of the region.

One possible reason that the colony was abandoned was perhaps the harsh climate proved to be too much for the orcs. However, this explanation is not viewed as legitimate as the current home for the orcs, the Icelands of Aeh'os'th'er'oc, are not much warmer or more hospitable than the island. The second reason is that perhaps the snow drakes drove the orcs off the island. The question being then, why settle on an island known to be inhabited by drakes? Ihea surmised that perhaps the orcs were dragon hunters who pursued the drakes for food or trophies. The smaller snow drakes were a friendlier game than the massive ice dragons and thought to be easier to kill perhaps. Rumors persist that the Aeh'os'th'er'oc eat dragon meat to this day so perhaps the beast's meat has been a dietary staple for the tribe for centuries.

The southern sister island of Karma'Goor holds one of the two settlements among the islands, Hol'mangar. It is believed that this settlement was once a thriving orcen colony long ago with the inhabitants working to draw out the islands' natural resources. However, the colony has long been abandoned and as Ihea writes in her journals, she visited the ruins of the colony only briefly and found several archaic pictures carved into some stones depicting dragons fighting in a great battle. Similar stones and runes were found on Kalta'Goor possibly indicating that both islands were settled at one point with Hol'mangar being the larger colony.

Could these runes be a picture from the War of the Chosen? One can't be sure. If it is, then perhaps whoever carved the pictures had first hand knowledge of drakes living on the islands long ago, and while the orcen settlers disappeared, the drakes lived on.

History:

ca. 9000 b.S. - The Dragon Survivors of the War of the Chosen Move On

According to currently known lore, the dragons that survived the War of the Chosen move off to live in far away lands to settle after the conflict. Myths tell that some dragons came to live high in the North.

ca. 8000 b.S. - The Snow Drake Appears

It is thought that the lesser drakes become more prevalent and are related to the great drakes. While it is not known how the actual dividing of the groups occurs, it is thought that the smaller drakes, such as the snow drake, branch off and become their own group about this time.

ca. 1600 b.S. - The Aeh'os'th'er'oc Orcs Found Hol'mangar

Evidence found on the islands suggest that a small band of Aeh'os'th'er'oc sailed to Karma'Goor and found a settlement there called Hol'mangar. They hope to inhabit the island and expand their territory. The stone carvings on the ruins today are thought to have been made about this time.

ca. 1590 b.S. - Snow Drake Sightings

The Aeh'os'th'er'oc records their first sightings of snow drakes flying high in sky over the island. The drakes become a regular sight as they seem to fly in the northern areas between the islands. The orcs document their sightings with elaborate stone carvings in and around the village of Hol'mangar.

ca. 1500 b.S. - The Discovery of Kalta'Goor

For almost a hundred years, the Aeh'os'th'er'oc Orcs of Hol'mangar try to sail to the north and see where the dragons are coming from. Finally, around 1500 b.S., a group finds success and discovers another island north of Karma'Goor and they name it Kalta'Goor, the "Ice Fangs". They find no evidence of the snow drake and sail back to Hol'mangar.

ca. 1450 b.S. - The Aeh'os'th'er'oc Civil War

An internal civil war among the various clans of the Aeh'os'th'er'oc orcs lasts for over two hundred years and the settlement of Hol'mangar is abandoned as the settlers are called back to the mainland to help fight. Hol'mangar is never again settled by the Aeh'os'th'er'oc.

ca. 1100 b.S. - The Aeh'os'th'er'oc Tribe Splits

The Aeh'os'th'er'oc tribe splits into two clans with the Aeh'os'th'er'oc being driven to the far north icelands and the remaining settle in north-central Caaeh'heroth and call themselves the Osther-Oc.

1665 a.S. - Dragon Researcher Ihea Miwone Discovers Hol'mangar

There have been no more documented visits to Kalta'Goor since the Aeh'os'th'er'oc civil war. The dragon researcher Ihea Miwone makes one visit to the island of Karma'Goor and discovers and discovers orcen ruins, which supposedly represent the ancient settlement of Hol'mangar. The ruins are half buried in snow and ice. The carvings done by the orcs centuries ago still exist and point north. This is Ihea's final clue as to the whereabouts of the rare snow drake.



Title: Re: Kalta'Goor - Isle of the Snow Drake
Post by: Ta`lia of the Seven Jewels on 30 July 2008, 05:46:59
A lovely beginning, Azhira!

Do you think snow a ped high is a lot? ;)  Maybe mention that she ventured there in summer, and had to use snow shoes...


Title: Re: Kalta'Goor - Isle of the Snow Drake
Post by: Bard Judith on 30 July 2008, 09:32:38
Hah!  Good point - we routinely went to school through ped-high snow in Northern Ontario.  When it got to two meters we dug out our snowshoes.

We should HAVE Sarvonian snowshoes, but call them something else.  I wonder if Az's Kaaer would be the people to have invented them?


Title: Re: Kalta'Goor - Isle of the Snow Drake
Post by: Azhira Styralias on 30 July 2008, 11:15:24
I am originally from the American southwest...so I have never seen snowshoes. I'd have to do some research on that one... ;)

But, good point about the snow! I think I'll make it not so deep in most places for my researcher to venture. In other places, it can be a ped or more deep requiring snowshoes (how do those work anyway...?)


Title: Re: Kalta'Goor - Isle of the Snow Drake
Post by: Nsikigan Ho´Tonanese Yourth on 30 July 2008, 11:19:23
Think tennis rackets. With shoe straps. Also, cross-country skiings pretty ancient, so you may want to look into that.


Title: Re: Kalta'Goor - Isle of the Snow Drake
Post by: Ta`lia of the Seven Jewels on 30 July 2008, 15:03:30
Azhira, you can just write, that fierce winds blow the snow away at the more exposed places, so you can have as much snow as you like. OR, just send her there in summer where the top of the snow blanket might have thawed a bit during the day and then the cold night froze over it again. Then you can actually walk on the snow like on a solid ground.


Title: Re: Kalta'Goor - Isle of the Snow Drake
Post by: Bard Judith on 30 July 2008, 19:43:39
That works too... but raises another point. 

Where exactly is this?  Do I need to add it / change it on the Climate map? Sounds like the Coor'lands to me!  :P


Title: Re: Kalta'Goor - Isle of the Snow Drake
Post by: Azhira Styralias on 30 July 2008, 20:39:14
Far northwest of the map, Judy. It's an island pretty much snow and ice all the time (will save some details on the flora, me thinks!  :P)

Caaehl'heroth (http://www.santharia.com/maps/continents/sarvonia_north_2.htm)

According to the dragon entries, the ice dragon and the snow drake live in this area hence my inspiration for the entry.


Title: Re: Kalta'Goor - Isle of the Snow Drake
Post by: Tharoc Wargrider on 31 July 2008, 19:53:32
Have you seen the 'Ice Dragon' and 'Dragon 5' pics in Sheil II's picture section?


Title: Re: Kalta'Goor - Isle of the Snow Drake
Post by: Azhira Styralias on 01 August 2008, 00:23:00
Added Description, Location, People and Climate.

I would like some hints on how to proceed with the temperatures and weather here. I'd like to specify temperatures if possible and how much sun a northern island would get.

@ Tharoc - Thanks for the tip! I've reserved the pics.  :thumbup:


Title: Re: Kalta'Goor - Isle of the Snow Drake
Post by: Azhira Styralias on 08 August 2008, 23:32:00
All done!

Comments are now being accepted.  :thumbup:


Title: Re: Kalta'Goor - Isle of the Snow Drake
Post by: Ta`lia of the Seven Jewels on 09 August 2008, 04:44:50
Hi Azhira!

Ihave no time for an uri, but I scrolled down and found this:

Quote
However, one such unique flower does grow on the island and that is the Icetear fern. The fern is unique in that it can grow in cold, hard soil and the seedling pushes its way through the snow to produce fantastic translucent blooms. The leaves of the fern are a shimmering light blue in color with pure white stalks. The fern requires little to no sunshine and the cold climate enhances its blooms.


Lovely ! :)

To the weather. No need to mention any numbers, if you had this in mind. This is an island, so one could think its climate is temperate compared to continental climates. However, in this part the sea is frozen in winter, so this would not apply.

Some hints: If you let it snow all year round, day and night, then the temperature is not  much below zero degrees, for otherwise it would not snow, if it is colder. In clear nights the temperature drops much farther, in these regions I would say up to - 40 degrees.

You have no measurements for that, but you could say, that it was so cold, that your researcher had to wear extra layers, that the beard of the dwarf was ices white etc.
What me impressed once was a "human" measurement . If you salivate (?) and your spit freezes before it reaches the ground it has  minus 40 degrees Celsius, same with urinating ;) (If you dare to)
Maybe you can invent something similar? ;9


Edit: I dearly hope you do not restrict this icetearfern to this islands, would love to have it on the Wicker Islands as well!


Title: Re: Kalta'Goor - Isle of the Snow Drake
Post by: Azhira Styralias on 10 August 2008, 11:41:59
Thank Talia for the suggestions!

I'll tweak the climate details a bit. The island is quite cold as the snow drake wouldn't live there if it were warm...however, I wouldn't know how to define "warm" for a snow drake...above zero degrees? (I'm American, so we're talking Fahrenheit here... :P) Or some other specific temperature? I will detail some other ways of telling temperature, I think, as you suggest like the spit/urinate method.  :cool:

But, I am not very good with climate stuff...maybe you or Judy can help in that regard.

And, no, the Icetear fern will have a home in other cold places...Iol, the Icelands and the Wicker Islands. Perhaps Cyllahoi as well?  :thumbup: But, developing in the Greenhouse (or Icehouse?) is something I rarely do so I may leave that entry for someone else... :P


Title: Re: Kalta'Goor - Isle of the Snow Drake
Post by: Bard Judith on 11 August 2008, 00:37:26
Er, in terms of measuring temperature, we do have a unit now.  They're called 'periks', which are equivalent to about ten degrees.  However, that entry isn't finished - still on the forums -  and you can't simply say 'negative four periks' to suggest forty below! 

You can have a look at the Climate discussion and the Temperature issues - separate the Temperature proposal from the Climate Zone discussion, because the latter is still a work in progress.  There are a number of useful benchmarks similar to Talia's suggestion about 'when spit freezes' (don't know if I have that specific one!) which you might find helpful! 


Title: Re: Kalta'Goor - Isle of the Snow Drake
Post by: Artimidor Federkiel on 13 August 2008, 04:44:49
It's... Uri-time!  :cool:

Yellow ... changes
Orange ... comments
Grey ... missing/unclear

Overview.
The island known as Kalta'Goor is but one of many unexplored lands of Northern Sarvonia. The details surrounding this island are considered unknown, even by the North's standards, and that speaks volumes as to the mysteriousness of this island. One intrepid researcher, Ihea Miwone, a Kasumarii expert on ice drakes, spent over ten years and partook in six journeys to Kalta'Goor as she was convinced that a rare breed of drake made their  home there: the Guldorian Snow Drake, also known as the "White Drake" and the "Ivorine Drake" (At alternative names we usually add them under apostophes.). Along with her contemporary, the dwarven scholar Runsek “Sparkaxe” Thuthrum, the author of the book "Dragonmyths", she found much more on Kalta'Goor than she bargained for.

Location details should also be part of the Overview. I first had to check the Location section next, because I needed to orientate myself. So that's important to have that in the Overview.

An important thing to consider at this point is to think about how these islands/places etc. are named. What language this is and what it means. When I put in same names up there, I tried to give them an orcish touch and reuse some words, so that they could stand for terms like "larger settlement/town" or "island", things like that. So it would be good to know what Kalta'Goor could mean and what some other names up there stand for. Maybe my inspiration for Kalta'Goor was the German word "kalt" for cold and "Goor" would mean "island" for whatever reason I thought of that.

I guess you also don't mention an approximate size of the island... You could deduce that somewhat from the Northern Sarvonian Monster map.

Description.
According to Ihea's journals, Kalta'Goor is largely a land of ice and snow. The island is dominated by two mountain peaks, what she called XXX and XXX. (Maybe our researcher found some ancient sources, that could possibly refer to these peaks? Because if a stanger comes around and just name them, that's a bit of a cheat, eh? ;) ) The sea surrounding the island is thick ice and a ship wouldn't make it within six to eight peds of the shore without having to stop before crashing into the ice shelf. The sky is perpetually overcast with light snow falling at all hours of the day and night.

When stepping foot on the island, the snow is deep, sometimes up to half a ped (). Travel is slow through the thick snow, which is pristine white and undisturbed of footprints or trails. Immediately, the two mountain peaks can be seen rising up into the clouds from anywhere  on the island. The tips of which are forever hidden in the thick, grey  (Another cool opportunity for ancient spelling!) clouds that hang low over the ground.

As one moves farther inland, the snow maintains an estimated thickness of between one palmspan to half a ped. A traveler must forge their way slowly into the snow while hiking cautiously over the stony ground underneath. Snowshoes are recommended when traveling over such deep snow as fortunately, the cold and damp sleet hardens the snow turning it into a hard surface. In her journals, Ihea found little evidence of any kinds of bodies of water such as lakes or streams except for a small half frozen stream on the western side of the island. It is surmised that, much like the western stream, any other bodies of water would no doubt be frozen underneath many palmspans of snow and ice.

Surrounding the island, the sea is very icy with large pieces of broken ice floating randomly in the water. Approximately four to seven peds from the shore, there is a solid, unbroken shelf of ice that renders any traveling ship impossible to get close to (I guess). Only by leaving the ship and walking over the ice can a traveler get to the shore.

The eastern shores of the island are dominated with high, jagged rocks that protrude from the snow. It is here that one of the mountain peaks slope down close to the water line. The jagged rocks make foot travel difficult as the surface is unstable with many rocky pits and spikes.

The southern shore is marked with six ice caves that begin about four peds from the shore line. Three of the six caves run deep into the mountain and have low ceilings with long, sharp fingers of ice that stab downward. Traveling through the caves is hazardous because if one tries to stand fully, the ice spikes would easily stab into one's skull. The ground surface is a mixture of ice and solid soil. Without a source of light, it is impossible to travel further into the caves for more than six to eight peds.

The western shoreline is mostly flat ground with a few boulder piles sitting randomly near the ice shore. The mountainside  here is not as smooth as the other areas and contains many high cliffs and rough surfaces. Most likely, the boulders are a result of a landslide  (Hey, keep those poor words together! Especially in this cold enviroment! :grin: - Well, at least my dictionary claims that it should be that way.) that looks to have sheared away some of the mountainside. The snow here is quite deep and almost impossible to cross in the high winter months. Along a running section of area, the snow is not quite as deep, perhaps just a few palmspans. The shallow snow runs up into the mountain side into a narrow valley. Upon digging through the snow, a stream can be found, half frozen and covered with a thin sheet of ice.

The northern seed of the island is quite impossible to explore fully as it contains the deepest snows and there is hardly any flat surface to cross. The mountainside  comes up directly to the shoreline leaving very little flat area. However, a single ice cave can be seen from the western side of the island, but access to the cave has proven impossible as it is located high up the mountainside.

Location.
Kalta'Goor is located northwest of the peninsula of Caaeh'heroth in Northern Sarvonia. The island is part of a group of islands and peninsulas that surround the Ice Sea. To the east of Kalta'Goor are the Icelands of Aeh'Os'th'er'oc, where the rare ice dragons make  their home. To the southwest is a very tiny island called XXX  while a small distance south is Kalta'Goor's sister island, Karma’Goor, which contains the ruins of a possible orcen village called Hol'mangar. An old story persists among the Osther-Oc that Hol'mangar was a dragon aviary during the Third Sarvonian War, or even possibly during the War of the Chosen.

People.
There is little evidence that Kalta'Goor is, or was, inhabited by any specific race or tribe. The island is so remote and largely inaccessible that it is doubtful that any race could travel there easily. And, there is little evidence of any flora or fauna that could subsist anyone living there.

One possible theory brought forth by the researcher Ihea Miwone is that the island once was visited by a little documented orc tribe called the Aeh'Os'th'er'oc, for which the nearby icelands are named. The Aeh'Os'th'er'oc are thought to be a small clan related to the much larger Osther-Oc tribe who dwell on the mainland Caaehl'heroth. It is possible that at one time, the Aeh'Os'th'er'oc had perhaps a small village or outpost on Kalta'Goor during the past. Any evidence of such has probably been long buried under the snow and would require a team of explorers to find anything.

Well, as hinted above, there could be some loose suggestions in some orcen lore our researcher has managed to acquire. All very shaky, but still  it would make a good little mystery. You might also hint that the inhospitable conditions perhaps were the demise of the orcs trying to settle there, and that a handful might have returned to Aeh'Os'th'er'oc, from where these rough information has still preserved somehow. - Sorry if that contradicts anything you mention later, I'm just commenting along as ideas get in my head while reading...

Climate.
The climate of the island of ice is not a varied one. Being located so far north, the island is trapped in perpetual winter with even the summer season bringing very little sunshine and warmth. Snow fall is constant all over the island with heavy snow falling during seven months of the year along with freezing rain and low fog. Summer months bring warmer temperatures (still very cold however) with winter months bringing harsh, blizzard like conditions with biting winds that blow from the Ice Sea. Even for a well prepared researcher such extreme conditions could prove fatal, so be warned!

Flora.
The near constant snowfall and overcast skies make for a harsh environment for many kinds of flora that would require sun and hardy soil. Hence, one would not find many kinds of green flora on the island.

However, one such unique flower does grow on the island and that is the Icetear fern. The fern is unique in that it can grow in cold, hard soil and the seedling pushes its way through the snow to produce fantastic translucent blooms. The leaves of the fern are a shimmering light blue in colour  with pure white stalks. The fern requires little to no sunshine and the cold climate enhances its blooms.

Fauna.
Kalta'Goor is so named because it is one of the few locations where the rare and beautiful snow drakes are known to live (So? Now what does Kalta'Goor mean then?). Although no nests have ever been seen or studied, Ihea had the pleasure to watch a snow drake hunt their sole source of food - the pinnip seal.

"During my third journey to Kalta'Goor (I wonder if she went completely on her own... Sounds more like a bit of an expedition to me...), I ventured around the east side of one of the mountains, keeping low to the shore. I heard barking noises, like a dog, only deeper and longer. I waited in between two large boulders and watched as a group of pinnip seals crawled upon an ice shelf to bask. Several of them had fish in their mouths and were quickly devouring them. The seal's social gathering was truly astounding to watch but not as much as what happened within the next few moments.

I felt a strange sensation along the back of my neck as if something was watching me. I peered upwards and was met with only the overcast sky and the blowing snow stinging my eyes. I ignored the feeling and continued to watch the seals. Suddenly, there was motion above. I instinctively lowered my head and gasped. A rush of white feathers came diving from the clouds and landed amidst the group of seals. Dumbfounded, I could only stare as my first snow drake sighting had come at last.

The magnificent beast was almost pure white, covered in what looked like feathers. It appeared as a bird with the head of a large lizard. Its talons were long and curved much like a Kasumarii moonblade. The drake emitted a screech that pierced the cold wind and made me wince in pain. The seals scattered in a panicked rush to the open waters  to escape the drake, but one was not so fortunate. The drake had underneath it a lone pinnip seal still struggling for its life. The beast  gave one long screech that sent chills up my spine despite the cold before tearing into its prey with hungry abandon.

I waited and watched the drake bloody its pristine feathers with the seal's meat before it took wing and disappeared above the clouds. The seal's remains, what little was left, was abandoned. It took me several moments to make myself move after watching the spectacle and when I finally did move on, it was far away from that ice shelf as it was an obvious hunting spot for the drake and I did not want to be mistaken for another drake meal."


Ihea Miwone documented a second sighting of the snow drake, this time it was even more harrowing than the first.

Suggest to have short captions for larger narrations at the top. This way you spot a caption and know what it will be about!

"My sixth and final journey to Kalta'Goor was my most memorable. It was this time I proved that not only do the snow drakes inhabit the island, but perhaps the great ice dragon does as well.

I sat upon a cliff of ice hoping to catch a glimpse of another successful hunt. For several hours, I had tried  to locate a snow drake nest but had beenunsuccessful. It would appear that the snow drake nests high above in the very peaks of the mountains, far beyond the reach of most men and beasts. Hence why there have been no documented sightings of the drake's nest and eggs. It was just as well as I had no tools with which to make such a climb anyhow.

Again, the sound of the drake's screech met my ears, even over the howl of the wind. The screech had become a normal sound to me but rarely did I ever see the drake that made the screech. The sounds always seemed to come from the perpetual overcast sky above. I heard a second and third screech followed by a deeper, louder noise. It was not a screech, but almost like a roar.

Startled, I backed against the rock wall behind me and looked up hoping to see the source of the roar. I was rewarded not a moment later when a massive beast came soaring down from the clouds. It was large than a snow drake and had ice blue scales over its body with leathery looking wings that stretched almost twenty peds from end to end. It was a pale blue colour  and glanced at me with piercing dark blue eyes.

I gasped as I realized what I was seeing. An adult ice dragon. I was simply shocked to see such a wondrous beast on the island, but then was struck with a thought. What was an ice dragon doing among the snow drakes? Was there an ice dragon nest on the island? Was the dragon from the Caaehl'heroth mainland? I soon had my answer and, as most always, nature spoke for me.

Ah yes, didn't we want to use a picture of Sheil in here? I guess you said so, didn't you, Azhira? - If so, let me know which one in this entry and provide a description...

The ice dragon had clutched within its claws a large stryker shark. The huge fish was thick and well muscled but it could only squirm in the dragon's powerful clutches. The dragon began to feed when suddenly a symphony of screeches seemed to come from all directions. I counted six snow drakes diving out of the clouds to attack the ice dragon.

The behemoth bellowed a challenge and took flight. The snow drakes circled around the dragon, dipping in and out, each time biting the dragon's skin. The larger beast whirled and circled, exhibiting dexterity unheard of in a creature its size. Its jaws snapped once and a snow drake was gone. The others screeched and nipped at the dragon all the while the larger drake whipping its tail and launching its head around in hopes of snatching one of the pestering snow drakes.

The aerial battle continued for a few moments before the dragon landed atop its kill and attempted to take it up with it. The drakes descended upon the dragon with talons and beaks in a courageous display of battle. Never before has a documented battle been witnessed between a drake and a dragon. The dragon was covered in bloody wounds while the group of six drakes was not down to three. The obvious ferociousness of the snow drakes was more than a match for a single ice dragon and the larger beast knew it. It backed away and flew off, its great wings carrying it higher and higher until it vanished among the clouds.

The remaining snow drakes screeched and called and feasted on the dragon's abandoned kill. I sat back and sighed, wondering how to possibly document such a fabulous spectacle. I realized that my study of Kalta'Goor was at an end. The harsh environment of the island was not suited for humans. The island would remain a snow drake home for the foreseeable future."


It is evident therefore that the pinnip seal makes a home on the island and serves as a food source for the snow drake. One of the seal's favourite  prey is the XXX  fish. These fish thrive in the ice waters around the Ice Sea and provide the seals with a hearty meal. The seals store thick fat on their bodies that enable them to withstand the cold climate. Ihea Miwone suggests in her brief research that the drakes do not hunt the seals often and perhaps the drakes only feed irregularly throughout their lives. The seal sightings on the island are numerous, which suggests that the island is perhaps one of the breeding ground locations for the seals.

Resources.
The island of Kalta'Goor has no natural resources to speak of as no tribe has ever been known to settle there and produce any natural resources. However, Ihea did surmise that the Icetear fern could possibly be used as a magic reagent (Ideally for Ximaxian Water School spells I'd say.). Its cold properties and unique way of survival could perhaps be studied further.

The island also contains many kinds of crystals buried under the mountains that could be mined and used in jewelry, as reagents or for  other uses. Ihea Miwone found several such crystals crushed and scattered around some of the ice caves, perhaps as a result of the snow drakes' digging through the ice to make a nest.

Myth/Lore.
There exists very little lore surrounding the island of Kalta'Goor. The island's name is actually orcish and means XXX (Aha! Now that we eventually get to it, it's X-rated... :lol:).  Among the lore of the reclusive orcs of the Icelands of Aeh'os'th'er'oc, it is told that the island was long inhabited by dragons. The story goes that after the War of the Chosen, the remaining dragons fled to the nearby island and dwelt there away from civilization.

The southern sister island of Karma'Goor holds the only settlement among the two islands, Hol'mangar. It is believed that this settlement was once a thriving orcen colony long ago with the inhabitants working to draw out the islands' natural resources. However, the colony has long been abandoned and as Ihea writes in her journals, she visited the ruins of the colony only briefly and found several archaic pictures carved into some stones depicting dragons fighting in a great battle. Could this be a picture of the War of the Chosen? One can't be sure. If it is, then perhaps whoever carved the pictures had first hand knowledge of drakes living on the islands long ago, and while the orcen settlers disappeared, the drakes lived on.

Good idea to mention some ancient signs of civilization on the island, maybe that also can find a bit its way into the Appearance section. Always great to have something from an ancient culture around, so that further mysteries could be unveiled somtime...

History.
ca. 9000 b.S. - The Dragon Survivors of the War of the Chosen Move On
The dragons that survived the War of the Chosen move off to live in far away lands to settle after the conflict. Myths tell that some dragons came to live high in the North.

ca. ]8000 b.S. - The Snow Drake Appears
It is thought that the lesser drakes become more prevalent and are related to the great drakes. While it is not known  how the actual dividing of the groups occurs, it is thought that the smaller drakes, such as the snow drake, branch off and become their own group about this time.

ca. 1600 b.S. - The Khrosh'uag-oc Orcs Found Hol'mangar
A small band of Khrosh’uag-oc sails to Karma'Goor and found a settlement there called Hol'mangar. They hope to inhabit the island and expand their territory. The stone carvings on the ruins today are thought to have been made about this time.

This is a bit factual, while you have it only merely suggested above I think. Maybe mention that sources strongly indicate that and the following, but that exact dates aren't given.

ca. 1590 b.S. - Snow Drake Sightings
The Khrosh'uag-oc records their first sightings of snow drakes flying high in sky over the island. The drakes become a regular sight as they seem to fly in the northern areas between the islands. The orcs document their sightings with elaborate stone carvings in and around the village of Hol'mangar.

ca. 1500 b.S. - The Discovery of Kalta'Goor
For almost a hundred years, the Khrosh'uag-oc Orcs of Hol'mangar try to sail to the north and see where the dragons are coming from. Finally, around 1500  b.S., a group finds success and discovers another island north of Karma'Goor and they name it Kalta'Goor. They find no evidence of the snow drake and sail back to Hol'mangar.

ca. 1450 b.S. - The Khrosh'uag-oc Civil War
An internal civil war among the various clans of the Khrosh'uag-oc Orcs lasts for over two hundred years and the settlement of Hol'mangar is abandoned as the settlers are called back to the mainland to help fight. Hol'mangar is never again settled by the Khrosh'uag-oc.

ca. 900 b.S. - The Khrosh'uag-oc Orcs Are Wiped Out
During a long war with the Erpheronian colony of Raevalem along the peninsula of Aden, the powerful Erpheronian army wipes out the last Khrosh'uag-oc resistance and declares the tribe all but gone. Lore persists to this day that there were survivors of the Khrosh'uag-oc and that they joined their cousins to the east, the Osther-Oc.

1665 a.S. - Dragon Researcher Ihea Miwone Discovers Hol'mangar
Since the Khrosh'uag-oc Orcs were wiped out by the Erpheronians in 900 b.S., there have been no more documented visits to Kalta'Goor. The dragon researcher Ihea Miwone makes one visit to the island of Karma'Goor and discovers orcen ruins, which supposedly represent the ancient settlement of  Hol'mangar, half buried in snow and ice. The carvings done by the orcs centuries ago still exist and point north. This is Ihea's final clue as to the whereabouts of the rare snow drake.

Yay! I'm done! *wipes sweat from brow* Cool entry yopu've got there, Azhira, and pun intended as well of course. Can still use some names and some things that come out further down below in the Myth and History section could make brief mentioníng further up, so that it fits a bit better together and is rounded up. - But all the way good stuff, Azhira! You're not letting your territory up there unresearched, now don't you? :lol:


Title: Re: Kalta'Goor - Isle of the Snow Drake
Post by: Ta`lia of the Seven Jewels on 13 August 2008, 06:12:21
Quote
I guess you also don't mention an approximate size of the island... You could deduce that somewhat from the Northern Sarvonian Monster map.

You could of course go to the distances thread as well, take the normal map of Caeel'heroth and extrapolate from there, might be easier. Or ask Talia to do it for you  ;)

Kalta'Goor:
length east west: 360 strals
north to south: 230 strals
from peak to peak 120 strals.

I don't think though, that she can have a correct idea of the size if she was not able to surround it with a ship by clear and calm weather northat we need a correct size.  With the snow falling so often and fog around as well, she might not have had much of a clear view.


Title: Re: Kalta'Goor - Isle of the Snow Drake
Post by: Azhira Styralias on 13 August 2008, 23:56:49
Thanks Arti and Talia!  :D

I'll get to work revising right away. There are some ways I can add some mysteriousness to the island, I agree. Some of the names I have yet to come up with as well, hence the XXX.

Quote
You're not letting your territory up there unresearched, now don't you?

What do you mean, Arti? Was confused...(not hard to do with me... :P)


Title: Re: Kalta'Goor - Isle of the Snow Drake
Post by: Azhira Styralias on 18 August 2008, 23:16:54
Edits complete!

Your comments are addressed in Yellow, Arti. I did not color all of the little grammar/spelling issues, so I hope you trust that I indeed made them.

I've kept much of the entry in first person journal format so as to give the reader a first hand account of the drakes. My intention was to give the drakes an air of mystery - they are very rare, as mentioned in the main drake entry, and were seen in only two of six journeys.

I also changed Khrosh'uag-oc to Aeh'os'th'er'oc. As my history tables suggest, the Aeh'os'th'er'oc were the main orcen tribe on Caael'heroth before their civil war that split the tribe into two clans - the Aeh'os'th'er'oc and the Osther-Oc. It made more sense to me to build on the Aeh'os'th'er'oc right now. The origins of the Khrosh'uag-oc are still in development, although both clans could have a historical tie to the islands, but I've only named one. I wasn't about to develop the entire histories of two orc tribes over one island... :buck:

Possible further entries that could spawn from this one include: the researcher Ihea Miwone, the Icetear fern, the ice crystals, and the silverpearl fish.  :thumbup: I don't think I'll write them up anytime soon...so they're open for the taking.


Title: Re: Kalta'Goor - Isle of the Snow Drake
Post by: Azhira Styralias on 23 August 2008, 04:44:32
Arti,

Any word on my little drake island here? No rush...just haven't heard from you lately.  :heart: :heart: :heart:


Title: Re: Kalta'Goor - Isle of the Snow Drake
Post by: Artimidor Federkiel on 23 August 2008, 15:00:52
Ah yeah... I plan to get this in, Azhira! Have to read it again in detail on integration, but I'm confident it's fine now :D


Title: Re: Kalta'Goor - Isle of the Snow Drake
Post by: Azhira Styralias on 24 August 2008, 11:27:21
Actually Arti...I want to hold off integrating this until Alysse and Tharoc give their approval first. I kinda developed several orcen concepts and history that were previously not there, nor were they even discussed with them. Nothing major, I don't think...I hope my Northern Comrades approve.  :grin:


Title: Re: Kalta'Goor - Isle of the Snow Drake
Post by: Alysse the Likely on 24 August 2008, 12:32:05
Okay, a couple of corrections:

Under "Description":

The name "Kalta'Goor" is thought to originate from a now extinct orcen dialect called "Org'kom'gh". It roughly translated means "Ice Fangs".

and

The eastern shores of the island are dominated by high, jagged rocks that protrude from the snow.

Under "Fauna":

The Guldorian Snow Drake is covered along its eight-ped-long-body in cyhalloian snow-coloured fur  (please, just say "white".   The colours are just given for reference.  I mean, we don't say things like "the pelt was deep obsidian", we say "it was black."  Right?)

Under "The Snow Drake Dines":

seal's remains, what little was left, were abandoned.

Under "Clash of the Dragons":

The dragon was covered in bloody wounds while the group of six drakes was now down to three.


That was all I could find.  This is absolutely marvelous, Azhira!  I love it!  Unless Tharoc has any major concerns, I say this entry is just fine with me.  But I'm not sure what plans he may have for the orcs, so we should get his input if possible.

Good work! :thumbup: :thumbup:

Alysse


Title: Re: Kalta'Goor - Isle of the Snow Drake
Post by: Artimidor Federkiel on 24 August 2008, 15:01:16
Well, I've already prepared the entry (Alysse's corrections are integrated), except History, and Alysse is fine with it. Due to the circumstances that I've forgotten by history table generator program I've coded in Vienna (I'm now with my Mom, celebrating her 60th birthday this weekend), I have to add the history later anyway. So I guess we can add the main entry at any rate, and should there be problems with history stuff this can still be addressed and updated before it gets on site. - Sounds ok, Azhira?


Title: Re: Kalta'Goor - Isle of the Snow Drake
Post by: Artimidor Federkiel on 07 September 2008, 16:37:09
History is also prepared now, will be available the next update :)


Title: Re: Kalta'Goor - Isle of the Snow Drake
Post by: Azhira Styralias on 08 September 2008, 11:38:51
Great! Thanks Arti! I almost forgot I even had a history section for this entry...:lol:


Title: Re: Kalta'Goor - Isle of the Snow Drake
Post by: Azhira Styralias on 10 September 2011, 02:07:38
SMALL REVISION: The "fern" mentioned in the entry is actually the tearfrost flower, later changed and never updated in this entry.

Flora. The near constant snowfall and overcast skies make for a harsh environment for many kinds of flora that would require sun and hardy soil. Hence, one would not find many kinds of green flora on the island.

However, one such unique flower does grow on the island and that is the Tearfrost flower (http://www.santharia.com/herbarium/tear_frost_flower.htm). The flower is unique in that it can grow in cold, hard soil and the seedling pushes its way through the snow to produce fantastic translucent blooms. The leaves of the flower are a shimmering light blue in colour with pure white stalks. The plant requires little to no sunshine and the cold climate enhances its blooms.

AND

Resources. The island of Kalta'Goor has no natural resources to speak of as there is no evidence that the ancient Aeh'Os'th'er'oc tribe ever produced any natural resources from the island. However, Ihea surmises that the Tearfrost flower (http://www.santharia.com/herbarium/tear_frost_flower.htm) could possibly be used as a magic reagent and be quite valuable in performing spells from the Ximaxian water school of magic. The flower's cold properties and unique way of survival among the cold climate of the island could perhaps be studied further by a trained herbalist.





Title: Re: Kalta'Goor - Isle of the Snow Drake
Post by: Artimidor Federkiel on 11 September 2011, 14:52:27
Okeydokey - entry was now updated on the site, Azhira!  :cool: