Portal:Mountains

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Introduction

View of the south side of the Santa Catalina Mountains as seen from Tucson, Arizona.
View of the south side of the Santa Catalina Mountains as seen from Tucson, Arizona.
Mount Everest, Earth's highest mountain

A mountain is an elevated portion of the Earth's crust, generally with steep sides that show significant exposed bedrock. Although definitions vary, a mountain may differ from a plateau in having a limited summit area, and is usually higher than a hill, typically rising at least 300 metres (1000 feet) above the surrounding land. A few mountains are isolated summits, but most occur in mountain ranges.

Mountains are formed through tectonic forces, erosion, or volcanism, which act on time scales of up to tens of millions of years. Once mountain building ceases, mountains are slowly leveled through the action of weathering, through slumping and other forms of mass wasting, as well as through erosion by rivers and glaciers.

High elevations on mountains produce colder climates than at sea level at similar latitude. These colder climates strongly affect the ecosystems of mountains: different elevations have different plants and animals. Because of the less hospitable terrain and climate, mountains tend to be used less for agriculture and more for resource extraction, such as mining and logging, along with recreation, such as mountain climbing and skiing.

The highest mountain on Earth is Mount Everest in the Himalayas of Asia, whose summit is 8,850 m (29,035 ft) above mean sea level. The highest known mountain on any planet in the Solar System is Olympus Mons on Mars at 21,171 m (69,459 ft). (Full article...)

Selected mountain-related landform

Striding Edge, an arête viewed from Helvellyn with the corrie Red Tarn to the left and Nethermost Cove to the right

An arête (/əˈrɛt/ ə-RETT) is a narrow ridge of rock which separates two valleys. It is typically formed when two glaciers erode parallel U-shaped valleys. Arêtes can also form when two glacial cirques erode headwards towards one another, although frequently this results in a saddle-shaped pass, called a col. The edge is then sharpened by freeze-thaw weathering, and the slope on either side of the arête steepened through mass wasting events and the erosion of exposed, unstable rock. The word arête (French: [a.ʁɛt]) is actually French for "edge" or "ridge"; similar features in the Alps are often described with the German equivalent term Grat.

Where three or more cirques meet, a pyramidal peak is created. (Full article...)

Selected mountain range

South Africa - Drakensberg (16261357780).jpg

The Drakensberg (Afrikaans: Drakensberge, Zulu: uKhahlamba, Sotho: Maluti) is the eastern portion of the Great Escarpment, which encloses the central Southern African plateau. The Great Escarpment reaches its greatest elevation – 2,000 to 3,482 metres (6,562 to 11,424 feet) within the border region of South Africa and Lesotho.

The Drakensberg escarpment stretches for more than 1,000 kilometres (600 miles) from the Eastern Cape Province in the South, then successively forms, in order from south to north, the border between Lesotho and the Eastern Cape and the border between Lesotho and KwaZulu-Natal Province. Thereafter it forms the border between KwaZulu-Natal and the Free State, and next as the border between KwaZulu-Natal and Mpumalanga Province. The escarpment winds north from there, through Mpumalanga, where it includes features such as the Blyde River Canyon, Three Rondavels, and God's Window. It then extends farther north to Hoedspruit in southeastern Limpopo where it is known as 'Klein Drankensberg' by the Afrikaner. From Hoedspruit it extends west to Tzaneen, also in Limpopo Province, where it is known as the Wolkberg Mountains and Iron Crown Mountain. At 2,200 m (7,200 ft) above sea level, the Wolkberg is the highest elevation in Limpopo. The escarpment extends west again and at Mokopane it is known as the Strydpoort Mountains. (Full article...)

Selected mountain type

Emi Koussi seen from International Space Station

In volcanology, a pyroclastic shield or ignimbrite shield is an uncommon type of shield volcano. Unlike most shield volcanoes, pyroclastic shields are formed mostly of pyroclastic and highly explosive eruptions rather than relatively fluid basaltic lava issuing from vents or fissures on the surface of the volcano. They typically display low-angle flank slopes and often have a central caldera caused by large eruptions. Lava is commonly extruded after explosive activity has ended. The paucity of associated Plinian fall deposits indicates that pyroclastic shields are characterized by low Plinian columns.

Pyroclastic shields are commonly known to form in the Central Andes of South America, as well as in Melanesia (the island of Bougainville alone has two). There are also pyroclastic shields in Africa, such as Emi Koussi in Chad. (Full article...)

Selected climbing article

Sit harness

A climbing harness is a device which allows a climber access to the safety of a rope. It is used in rock and ice climbing, abseiling, and lowering; this is in contrast to other activities requiring ropes for access or safety such as industrial rope work (such as window cleaning), construction, and rescue and recovery, which use safety harnesses instead. (Full article...)

Related portals

General images

The following are images from various mountain-related articles on Wikipedia.

Selected skiing article

The Tour of Anchorage is a point-to-point cross-country ski race held annually on the first Sunday in March in Anchorage, Alaska. Established in 1989, it's part of the American Ski Marathon Series. (Full article...)

Subcategories

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Topics

Shivling
Eruption of Pinatubo 1991

Flora and fauna

Climbing in Greece
Georg Winkler.jpg

Lists of mountains

Recognized content

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