We present the first detailed spatial analysis of a four-year, wintertime visible aerosol optical depth (AOD) climatology from the Multi-angle Imaging SpectroRadiometer (MISR) over greater India. Meteorological fields from the National Centers for Environmental Prediction (NCEP) reanalysis, topographic data, and information related to aerosol source regions are used to explain the spatial patterns in MISR AODs. High AODs are found over much of greater India. The highest AODs are over the northern Indian state of Bihar, where we show that meteorology, topography, and aerosol sources all favor development of a concentrated pool of airborne particles. MISR AODs are validated against five ground-based sites in India and Nepal, revealing similar error characteristics found in other validation studies for the MISR aerosol product.