Frostgale Taiga is the large Boreal region located in the far north of Akados. It rests below The Nevermelt Glacier and to the north of the Valrua Sea, and is nestled in between the northern part of The Stoneheart Mountains and the World Spine Mountains. The center of the region is split by a large ravine and river called The Arctic Run that flows all the way to the Sea. The western portion of the region is the planes known as the Hyperborean Way.
The geography of The Frostgale Taiga is as varied as the inhabitants and the creatures. Much of the north is made of vast swathes of boreal forest, with large open areas of plains of rolling hills in between. Dozens of large lakes can be found throughout the region, and the enormous Valrua sea marks its southern border. Huge mountains and dormant volcanoes are home to ancient worshippers who believe them created by the Gods. Another common site in the north are the boreal wetlands, often called swamps or Morass areas. These are filled with flooded ice flows and a variety of unique creatures and inhabitants that find themselves uniquely suited to their frigid wetland home. Wherever you find yourself in the north, one common theme is the cold. While the southern portions may find pleasant summers and a period where crops may be grown, even they experience sub-zero temperatures, blizzards and gale-force winds. Only the most hardy of folk call these lands their homes, for not only is the harsh weather a constant concern, but dozens of threatening beasts and monsters also call the north their home.
Fauna & Flora
Hundreds of species of flora and fauna inhabit the Frostgale Taiga, along with dozens of dangerous creatures and beasts. Even with the cold weather, many more tribes, villages and ancient kingdoms dot its perilous landscape. The boreal forests of the north host a wide variety of trees species, the most common include the white birch, trembling aspen, White Spruce and balsam poplar. All of these trees are resilient and tolerant of the cold temperatures that flow through the region. The frigid wetlands of the area find themselves mostly home to White Cedar and Black Spruce trees. Some shrubs can found in abundance inside the forests, such as blueberry and cranberry, which produce brightly coloured berries that attract fruit-eating birds such as bohemian waxwings. The berries also provide food for mammals varying in size from small rodents to large bears. The berries are also an important source of medicine, food and craft resources to the groups living in the region. Many varieties of moss and lichen grow in the mountains and hills, and even more unique varieties thrive in the wetlands. A variety of fox, hare, marmot and squirrel can be found and are often hunted by those that live here. Nearer to plentiful water sources and streams can be Otters, shrews and beavers. Some pika, mink and woodchuck can rarely be seen as well. Above the flatlands and around its lakes, especially near the mountains, can be seen a huge amount of avian species. Many are migratory and go south for the winter, but a very few find refuge inside caves. Owl species such as the grey, boreal, snow and even giant owls can be found in abundance. Goose, quail, ravens, eagles and even pelicans are often sighted overhead. The waterways and lakes of the north, as well as the great Valrua Sea, are filled with various fish and sea creatures. The most common of these are Salmon, Sturgeon and Trout. In the wetlands other varieties are sometimes seen, such as Catfish and Arctic Crocodiles, whos unique metabolism allows them to survive even a complete freeze. This region is landlocked from the ocean, and to find other marine life you must travel further east beyond The World Spine Mountains. where the ocean lie. Many large herds of animals also roam the plains and forests, such as deer, elk, and even reindeer and muskox. In the mountains and hills can be found Mountain Goats, and further to the north, Moose and muskox are sometimes seen. Mammoth are exceptionally rare but a few herds exist in the north western part of the Taiga, often herded by the frost giants who call it home. While there are some exceptionally deadly predators in the area, a larger variety of other less dangerous ones also hunt the north, such as Wolves, Black and Grizzly bears. Other territorial creatures lay claim to various regions of the north, such as the Dire Wolf, Crag Cat, Sabre Tooth Tiger, Owlbear and Winter Wolf. Polar Bears are sometimes seen, but they are far less common here than they are to the east where the ocean lies. The ones in the Frostgale Taiga are usually only found near the Hyperborean way, and how or why they got here is a mystery. Lastly the wetlands are home to other dangers, such as giant frogs and eel hounds been known to claim their hunting grounds. There are other far more terrifying dangers that sometimes threaten the animals and residents of the valley. White Dragons who dwell in their frozen mountainous caves or come from the iceberg drifts to the east, Manticores, Griffons and Rocs sometimes fly out of the mountains in search of food. Yetis, Remorhaz, Giants (both hill and Frost) as well as Ice Trolls are also a major danger in the north. The wetlands have their own slew of dangers, from giant electric catfish to dire crocodiles, and some have even claimed to have seen a froghemoth.