Novorossiysk is connected by a branch railway to Tikhoryetskaya (169 m.) with the main Caucasian line, which crosses the Volga near Tsaritsyn, and has become an important centre for the export of corn, and since the petroleum wells of Groznyi in northern Caucasia were tapped it has become an entrepot for the export of petroleum.
Owing to the great railway which crosses the country from Riga to Smolensk, afterwards dividing into two branches, to Orenburg and Tsaritsyn on the lower Volga respectively, Riga is the storehouse and place of export for hemp coming by rail from west central Russia, and for corn, Riga merchants sending their buyers as far east as Tambov.
At Tsaritsyn the great river reaches its extreme south-western limit, and is there separated from the Don by an isthmus only 45 m.
At Tsaritsyn the river takes a sharp turn in a south-easterly direction towards the Caspian; it enters the Caspian steppes, and a few miles above Tsaritsyn sends off a branch - the Akhtuba - which accompanies it for 330 m.
The average date of the break-up is April 11 th at Tver, and 14 days later about Kostroma, from which point a regular acceleration is observed (April 16th at Kazan, April 7th at Tsaritsyn, and March 17th at Astrakhan).