Utah is a state in the western United States. It became the 45th state admitted to the U. S. on January 4, 1896. Utah is the 13th-largest by area, 31st-most-populous, 10th-least-densely populated of the 50 United States. Utah has a population of more than 3 million according to the Census estimate for July 1, 2016. Urban development is concentrated in two areas: the Wasatch Front in the north-central part of the state, which contains 2.5 million people. Utah is bordered by Colorado to the east, Wyoming to the northeast, Idaho to the north, Arizona to the south, Nevada to the west, it touches a corner of New Mexico in the southeast. 62% of Utahns are reported to be members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, making Utah the only state with a majority population belonging to a single church. This influences Utahn culture and daily life; the LDS Church's world headquarters is located in Salt Lake City. The state is a center of transportation, information technology and research, government services, a major tourist destination for outdoor recreation.
In 2013, the U. S. Census Bureau estimated. St. George was the fastest-growing metropolitan area in the United States from 2000 to 2005. Utah has the 14th highest median average income and the least income inequality of any U. S. state. A 2012 Gallup national survey found Utah overall to be the "best state to live in" based on 13 forward-looking measurements including various economic and health-related outlook metrics. A common folk etymology is that the name "Utah" is derived from the name of the Ute tribe, purported to mean "people of the mountains" in the Ute language. However, the word for people in Ute is'núuchiu' while the word for mountain is'káav', offering no linguistic connection to the words'Ute' or'Utah'. According to other sources "Utah" is derived from the Apache name "yuttahih" which means "One, Higher up" or "Those that are higher up". In the Spanish language it was said as "Yuta", subsequently the English-speaking people adapted the word "Utah". Thousands of years before the arrival of European explorers, the Ancestral Puebloans and the Fremont people lived in what is now known as Utah, some of which spoke languages of the Uto-Aztecan group.
Ancestral Pueblo peoples built their homes through excavations in mountains, the Fremont people built houses of straw before disappearing from the region around the 15th century. Another group of Native Americans, the Navajo, settled in the region around the 18th century. In the mid-18th century, other Uto-Aztecan tribes, including the Goshute, the Paiute, the Shoshone, the Ute people settled in the region; these five groups were present. The southern Utah region was explored by the Spanish in 1540, led by Francisco Vásquez de Coronado, while looking for the legendary Cíbola. A group led by two Catholic priests—sometimes called the Dominguez-Escalante Expedition—left Santa Fe in 1776, hoping to find a route to the coast of California; the expedition encountered the native residents. The Spanish made further explorations in the region, but were not interested in colonizing the area because of its desert nature. In 1821, the year Mexico achieved its independence from Spain, the region became known as part of its territory of Alta California.
European trappers and fur traders explored some areas of Utah in the early 19th century from Canada and the United States. The city of Provo, Utah was named for one, Étienne Provost, who visited the area in 1825; the city of Ogden, Utah was named after Peter Skene Ogden, a Canadian explorer who traded furs in the Weber Valley. In late 1824, Jim Bridger became the first known English-speaking person to sight the Great Salt Lake. Due to the high salinity of its waters, He thought. After the discovery of the lake, hundreds of American and Canadian traders and trappers established trading posts in the region. In the 1830s, thousands of migrants traveling from the Eastern United States to the American West began to make stops in the region of the Great Salt Lake known as Lake Youta. Following the death of Joseph Smith in 1844, Brigham Young, as president of the Quorum of the Twelve, became the effective leader of the LDS Church in Nauvoo, Illinois. To address the growing conflicts between his people and their neighbors, Young agreed with Illinois Governor Thomas Ford in October 1845 that the Mormons would leave by the following year.
Young and the first band of Mormon pioneers reached the Salt Lake Valley on July 24, 1847. Over the next 22 years, more than 70,000 pioneers settled in Utah. For the first few years, Brigham Young and the thousands of early settlers of Salt Lake City struggled to survive; the arid desert land was deemed by the Mormons as desirable as a place where they could practice their religion without harassment. The Mormon settlements provided pioneers for other settlements in the West. Salt Lake City became the hub of a "far-flung commonwealth" of Mormon settlements. With new church converts coming from the East and around the world, Church leaders assigned groups of church members as missionaries to establish other settlements throughout the West, they developed irrigation to support large pioneer populations along Utah's Wasatch front. Throughout the remainder of the 19th century, Mormon pioneers established hundreds of other settlements in Utah, Id
A chordate is an animal constituting the phylum Chordata. During some period of their life cycle, chordates possess a notochord, a dorsal nerve cord, pharyngeal slits, an endostyle, a post-anal tail: these five anatomical features define this phylum. Chordates are bilaterally symmetric; the Chordata and Ambulacraria together form the superphylum Deuterostomia. Chordates are divided into three subphyla: Vertebrata. There are extinct taxa such as the Vetulicolia. Hemichordata has been presented as a fourth chordate subphylum, but now is treated as a separate phylum: hemichordates and Echinodermata form the Ambulacraria, the sister phylum of the Chordates. Of the more than 65,000 living species of chordates, about half are bony fish that are members of the superclass Osteichthyes. Chordate fossils have been found from as early as the Cambrian explosion, 541 million years ago. Cladistically, vertebrates - chordates with the notochord replaced by a vertebral column during development - are considered to be a subgroup of the clade Craniata, which consists of chordates with a skull.
The Craniata and Tunicata compose the clade Olfactores. Chordates form a phylum of animals that are defined by having at some stage in their lives all of the following anatomical features: A notochord, a stiff rod of cartilage that extends along the inside of the body. Among the vertebrate sub-group of chordates the notochord develops into the spine, in wholly aquatic species this helps the animal to swim by flexing its tail. A dorsal neural tube. In fish and other vertebrates, this develops into the spinal cord, the main communications trunk of the nervous system. Pharyngeal slits; the pharynx is the part of the throat behind the mouth. In fish, the slits are modified to form gills, but in some other chordates they are part of a filter-feeding system that extracts particles of food from the water in which the animals live. Post-anal tail. A muscular tail that extends backwards behind the anus. An endostyle; this is a groove in the ventral wall of the pharynx. In filter-feeding species it produces mucus to gather food particles, which helps in transporting food to the esophagus.
It stores iodine, may be a precursor of the vertebrate thyroid gland. There are soft constraints that separate chordates from certain other biological lineages, but are not part of the formal definition: All chordates are deuterostomes; this means. All chordates are based on a bilateral body plan. All chordates are coelomates, have a fluid filled body cavity called a coelom with a complete lining called peritoneum derived from mesoderm; the following schema is from the third edition of Vertebrate Palaeontology. The invertebrate chordate classes are from Fishes of the World. While it is structured so as to reflect evolutionary relationships, it retains the traditional ranks used in Linnaean taxonomy. Phylum Chordata †Vetulicolia? Subphylum Cephalochordata – Class Leptocardii Clade Olfactores Subphylum Tunicata – Class Ascidiacea Class Thaliacea Class Appendicularia Class Sorberacea Subphylum Vertebrata Infraphylum incertae sedis Cyclostomata Superclass'Agnatha' paraphyletic Class Myxini Class Petromyzontida or Hyperoartia Class †Conodonta Class †Myllokunmingiida Class †Pteraspidomorphi Class †Thelodonti Class †Anaspida Class †Cephalaspidomorphi Infraphylum Gnathostomata Class †Placodermi Class Chondrichthyes Class †Acanthodii Superclass Osteichthyes Class Actinopterygii Class Sarcopterygii Superclass Tetrapoda Class Amphibia Class Sauropsida Class Synapsida Craniates, one of the three subdivisions of chordates, all have distinct skulls.
They include the hagfish. Michael J. Benton commented that "craniates are characterized by their heads, just as chordates, or all deuterostomes, are by their tails". Most craniates are vertebrates; these consist of a series of bony or cartilaginous cylindrical vertebrae with neural arches that protect the spinal cord, with projections that link the vertebrae. However hagfish have incomplete braincases and no vertebrae, are therefore not regarded as vertebrates, but as members of the craniates, the group from which vertebrates are thought to have evolved; however the cladistic exclusion of hagfish from the vertebrates is controversial, as they ma
Venomous snakes are species of the suborder Serpentes that are capable of producing venom, which they use for killing prey, for defense, to assist with digestion of their prey. The venom is delivered by injection using hollow or grooved fangs, although some venomous snakes lack well-developed fangs. Common venomous snakes include the families Elapidae, Viperidae and some of the Colubridae; the toxicity of venom is indicated by murine LD50, while multiple factors are considered to judge the potential danger to humans. Other important factors for risk assessment include the likelihood that a snake will bite, the quantity of venom delivered with the bite, the efficiency of the delivery mechanism, the location of a bite on the body of the victim. Snake venom may have both hemotoxic properties; the evolutionary history of venomous snakes can be traced back to as far as 25 million years ago. Snake venom is modified saliva used for prey immobilization and self-defense and is delivered through specialized teeth, hollow fangs, directly into the bloodstream or tissue of the target.
Evidence has been presented for the Toxicofera hypothesis, but venom was present in the ancestors of all snakes as "toxic saliva" and evolved to extremes in those snake families classified as venomous by parallel evolution. The Toxicofera hypothesis further implies that "nonvenomous" snake lineages have either lost the ability to produce venom, or do produce venom in small quantities sufficient to help capture small prey but causing no harm to humans when bitten. There is not a single or special taxonomic group for venomous snakes that comprise species from different families; this has been interpreted to mean venom in snakes originated more than once as the result of convergent evolution. Around a quarter of all snake species are identified as being venomous. Venomous snakes are said to be poisonous, but poison and venom are not the same thing. Poisons must be ingested, inhaled or absorbed, while venom must be injected into the body by mechanical means. While unusual, there are a few species of snake which are poisonous.
Rhabdophis keelback snakes are both venomous and poisonous – their poisons are stored in nuchal glands and are acquired by sequestering toxins from poisonous toads the snakes eat. Certain garter snakes from Oregon can retain toxins in their livers from ingesting rough-skinned newts. LD50, Mostly on Rodents, is a common indicator of snakes' toxicity with a smaller resultant value indicating a higher level of toxicity. There have been numerous studies on snake venom with a variability of potency estimates. There are four methods in which the LD50 test is conducted, which are injections to subcutis, vein and peritoneum; the former is most applicable to actual bites as only vipers with large fangs, such as large Bitis, Crotalus, or Daboia specimens, would be able to deliver a bite, intramuscular, snakebites cause IV envenomation. Testing using dry venom mixed with 0.1% bovine serum albumin in saline, gives more consistent results than just saline alone. Belcher's sea snake, which many times is mistakenly called the hook-nosed Sea Snake, has been erroneously popularized as the most venomous snake in the world, due to the first edition of Ernst and Zug's book, Snakes in Question: The Smithsonian Answer Book, published in 1996.
Prominent venom expert Associate Professor Bryan Grieg Fry has clarified the error: "The hook nosed myth was due to a fundamental error in a book called Snakes in Question. In there, all the toxicity testing results were lumped in together, regardless of the mode of testing; as the mode can influence the relative number, venoms can only be compared within a mode. Otherwise, it's apples and rocks." Belcher's sea snake's actual LD50 is 0.155 mg/kg. Studies on mice and human cardiac cell culture show that venom of the inland taipan, drop by drop, is the most toxic among all snakes; the toxicity of snake venom is sometimes used to gauge the extent of danger to humans, but this is not enough. Many venomous snakes are specialized predators whose venom may be adapted to incapacitate their preferred prey. A number of other factors are critical in determining the potential hazard of any given venomous snake to humans, including their distribution and behavior. For example, while the inland taipan is regarded as the world's most venomous snake based on LD50 tests on mice, it is a shy species and strikes, has not caused any known human fatalities.
On the other hand, India's Big Four, while less venomous than the inland taipan, are found in closer proximity to human settlements and are more confrontational, thus leading to more deaths from snakebite. In addition, some species, such as the black mamba and coastal taipan show some aggression when alarmed or in self-defence, may deliver fatal doses of venom, resulting in high human mortality rates. Snakebite Snake venom Venomoid Big Four List of venomous animals Venomous fish Venomous mammals Poisonous amphibians Toxic birds Venomous snakes and outdoor workers Bite-prevention and treatment information for outdoor workers
The United States of America known as the United States or America, is a country composed of 50 states, a federal district, five major self-governing territories, various possessions. At 3.8 million square miles, the United States is the world's third or fourth largest country by total area and is smaller than the entire continent of Europe's 3.9 million square miles. With a population of over 327 million people, the U. S. is the third most populous country. The capital is Washington, D. C. and the largest city by population is New York City. Forty-eight states and the capital's federal district are contiguous in North America between Canada and Mexico; the State of Alaska is in the northwest corner of North America, bordered by Canada to the east and across the Bering Strait from Russia to the west. The State of Hawaii is an archipelago in the mid-Pacific Ocean; the U. S. territories are scattered about the Pacific Ocean and the Caribbean Sea, stretching across nine official time zones. The diverse geography and wildlife of the United States make it one of the world's 17 megadiverse countries.
Paleo-Indians migrated from Siberia to the North American mainland at least 12,000 years ago. European colonization began in the 16th century; the United States emerged from the thirteen British colonies established along the East Coast. Numerous disputes between Great Britain and the colonies following the French and Indian War led to the American Revolution, which began in 1775, the subsequent Declaration of Independence in 1776; the war ended in 1783 with the United States becoming the first country to gain independence from a European power. The current constitution was adopted in 1788, with the first ten amendments, collectively named the Bill of Rights, being ratified in 1791 to guarantee many fundamental civil liberties; the United States embarked on a vigorous expansion across North America throughout the 19th century, acquiring new territories, displacing Native American tribes, admitting new states until it spanned the continent by 1848. During the second half of the 19th century, the Civil War led to the abolition of slavery.
By the end of the century, the United States had extended into the Pacific Ocean, its economy, driven in large part by the Industrial Revolution, began to soar. The Spanish–American War and World War I confirmed the country's status as a global military power; the United States emerged from World War II as a global superpower, the first country to develop nuclear weapons, the only country to use them in warfare, a permanent member of the United Nations Security Council. Sweeping civil rights legislation, notably the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Voting Rights Act of 1965 and the Fair Housing Act of 1968, outlawed discrimination based on race or color. During the Cold War, the United States and the Soviet Union competed in the Space Race, culminating with the 1969 U. S. Moon landing; the end of the Cold War and the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991 left the United States as the world's sole superpower. The United States is the world's oldest surviving federation, it is a representative democracy.
The United States is a founding member of the United Nations, World Bank, International Monetary Fund, Organization of American States, other international organizations. The United States is a developed country, with the world's largest economy by nominal GDP and second-largest economy by PPP, accounting for a quarter of global GDP; the U. S. economy is post-industrial, characterized by the dominance of services and knowledge-based activities, although the manufacturing sector remains the second-largest in the world. The United States is the world's largest importer and the second largest exporter of goods, by value. Although its population is only 4.3% of the world total, the U. S. holds 31% of the total wealth in the world, the largest share of global wealth concentrated in a single country. Despite wide income and wealth disparities, the United States continues to rank high in measures of socioeconomic performance, including average wage, human development, per capita GDP, worker productivity.
The United States is the foremost military power in the world, making up a third of global military spending, is a leading political and scientific force internationally. In 1507, the German cartographer Martin Waldseemüller produced a world map on which he named the lands of the Western Hemisphere America in honor of the Italian explorer and cartographer Amerigo Vespucci; the first documentary evidence of the phrase "United States of America" is from a letter dated January 2, 1776, written by Stephen Moylan, Esq. to George Washington's aide-de-camp and Muster-Master General of the Continental Army, Lt. Col. Joseph Reed. Moylan expressed his wish to go "with full and ample powers from the United States of America to Spain" to seek assistance in the revolutionary war effort; the first known publication of the phrase "United States of America" was in an anonymous essay in The Virginia Gazette newspaper in Williamsburg, Virginia, on April 6, 1776. The second draft of the Articles of Confederation, prepared by John Dickinson and completed by June 17, 1776, at the latest, declared "The name of this Confederation shall be the'United States of America'".
The final version of the Articles sent to the states for ratification in late 1777 contains the sentence "The Stile of this Confederacy shall be'The United States of America'". In June 1776, Thomas Jefferson wrote the phrase "UNITED STATES OF AMERICA" in all capitalized letters in the headline of his "original Rough draught" of the Declaration of Independence; this draft of the document did not surface unti
Common names: western rattlesnake, northern Pacific rattlesnake, Pacific rattlesnake, moreCrotalus oreganus is a venomous pit viper species found in North America in the western United States, parts of British Columbia, northwestern Mexico. Seven subspecies are recognized, including the nominate subspecies described here; the size of this species varies with some populations being stunted and others growing large. Mainland specimens reach 100 cm in length, with the largest on record being 162.6 cm for C. o. oreganus. This species, in its various forms, shows considerable ontogenetic variation. Juveniles have more or less distinct patterns, but these fade as the animals mature; the color of the iris matches the ground color, which may be bronze, gold, or different shades of tan, pink, or gray. The color pattern of the typical form, C. o. oreganus, has a dark-brown, dark-gray, olive-brown, or sometimes black or pale yellowish ground color overlaid dorsally with a series of large, dark blotches with uneven white edges.
These blotches are wider than the spaces that separate them. Additionally, a lateral series of blotches darker than the dorsal blotches, is visible on all but the darkest specimens; the first rings of the tail are about the same color as the last body blotches, but these rings become progressively darker. The belly is pale yellow with brown spots. A large, dark-brown blotch on the snout has a pale border behind it that forms transverse bars on the supraoculars. There is a dark brown postocular stripe with a white border that extends from the eye to around the angle of the jaw, its common names include western rattlesnake, northern Pacific rattlesnake, Pacific rattlesnake, black rattlesnake, Arizona diamond rattlesnake, black diamond rattlesnake, black snake, California rattlesnake, confluent rattlesnake, diamond-back rattlesnake, Great Basin rattlesnake, Hallowell's rattlesnake, Missouri rattlesnake, Oregon rattlesnake, Pacific rattler, southern rattlesnake, western black rattlesnake, western rattler, north Pacific rattlesnake.
It is found in North America from southwestern Canada, through much of the western half of the United States, south into northern Mexico. In Canada, it is found in southern British Columbia. In the US, it occurs in Washington, Oregon and southern Idaho, Nevada, Utah and west-central New Mexico. In northern Mexico, it is found in western Baja California and the extreme north of Baja California Sur, from sea level to an altitude of 2,500 metres; this species reportedly occurs on six different islands: Morro Rock, Morro Bay, San Luis Obispo County, California Anaho Island, Pyramid Lake, Washoe County, Nevada Rattlesnake Island, Clear Lake, Lake County, California Santa Catalina Island, off the coast of San Pedro, Los Angeles South Coronado Island, one of the Coronado Islands off the coast of Baja California. Mare Island, California Using its heat-sensing facial pits to locate prey,C. Oreganus eats birds, bird eggs, small mammals, from mice up to and including rabbits, it eats small reptiles and amphibians.
The juveniles eat insects. Sexually mature females bear live young in broods of as many as 25; this species is classified as Least Concern on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Species are listed as such due to their wide distribution, presumed large population, or because they are unlikely to be declining fast enough to qualify for listing in a more threatened category; the population trend was stable when assessed in 2007. List of crotaline species and subspecies Crotalus by common name Crotalus by taxonomic synonyms Crotalinae by common name Crotalinae by taxonomic synonyms Snakebite Holbrook, J. E. 1840. North American Herpetology. Vol. IV. Dobson. Philadelphia. 126 pp. Crotalus oreganus at the Reptarium.cz Reptile Database. Accessed 12 December 2007
Crotalus viridis is a venomous pit viper species native to the western United States, southwestern Canada, northern Mexico. Two subspecies are recognized, including the nominate subspecies described here; the taxonomic history of this species is convoluted. Seven other C. viridis subspecies were recognized, including C. v. abyssus, C. v. caliginis, C. v. cerberus, C. v. concolor, C. v. helleri, C. v. lutosus and C. v. oreganus. However, in 2001 Ashton and de Queiroz described their analysis of the variation of mitochondrial DNA across the range of this species, their results agreed broadly with those obtained by Pook et al.. Two main clades were identified and west of the Rocky Mountains, which they argued were two different species: on the one hand C. viridis, including the conventional subspecies C. v. viridis and C. v. nuntius, on the other C. oreganus, including all the other traditional subspecies of C. viridis. The authors retained the names of the traditional subspecies, but emphasized the need for more work to be done on the systematics of C. oreganus.
Common names for this species include Hopi rattlesnake. This species grows to more than 100 cm in length; the maximum recorded size is 151.5 cm. In Montana, specimens exceed 120 centimetres in length. One of the most characteristic features is the presence of three or more four, internasal scales. Identification characteristics will vary depending on. Western rattlesnakes are lightly colored in hues of brown. Patches of dark brown are distributed in a dorsal pattern. A color band may be seen at the back of the eye; the western rattlesnake group carries the distinctive triangle-shaped head and pit sensory organs on either side of the head. A key characteristic that can help differentiate a western rattlesnake from other rattlesnakes is the presence of two internasals contacting the rostral. They, the subspecies mentioned below, are found in North America over much of the Great Plains, the eastern foothills and some intermontane valleys of the Rocky Mountains, from southwestern Canada through the United States to northern Mexico.
In Canada, they occur in Saskatchewan. Its vertical range is from 100 m near the Rio Grande to over 2,775 m in elevation in Wyoming. Wright and Wright and Klauber both mention Utah as within the range of this species, including maps showing it confined to the extreme southeastern part of the state; the type locality is described as "the Upper Missouri ". An emendation was proposed by H. M. Smith and Taylor to "Gross, Boyd County, Nebraska."Habitat characteristics can vary depending on subspecies and range. Western rattlesnakes occupy areas with an abundant prey base. Many subspecies occupy somewhat rocky areas with outcrops serving as den sites. Western rattlesnakes have been known to occupy burrows of other animals, they seem to prefer dry areas with moderate vegetation coverage. Vegetation cover will vary depending on region and subspecies. Western rattlesnakes live on the land; some rest in crevices or caves. They are active diurnally in cooler weather and nocturnally during hot weather C. viridis.
This species complex is equipped with powerful venom, using about 20-55 percent of venom in one bite, will defend themselves if threatened or injured. As with other rattlesnake species, western rattlesnakes will vibrate their tails, which produces a unique rasping sound to warn intruders; the venom of the western rattlesnake is a complexly structured mixture of different proteins with enzymes such as proteases and peptidases found among them. Besides the hemotoxine and its tissue destructive effect, the venom has neurotoxic properties. Western rattlesnakes, because of their expansive distribution, have a wide array of prey; this species prefers small mammals, such as ground squirrels, ground nesting birds, rats, small rabbits and prairie dogs. They will feed on amphibians and reptiles, sometimes other snakes; this is more seen in juvenile snakes. Western rattlesnakes can produce from one to 25 young per reproduction event; the average number of young ranges from four to 12, but can vary due to availability of food and environmental conditions.
Males may compete for females during the breeding season, but western rattlesnake females may not breed every year. They give birth in late summer or early fall, being their breed 22–28 cm long, without the need for parental care. In addition, their pups are toxic as soon, they reach sexual maturity at three years of age. It is common for females to give birth at communal den sites with the young born between August and October; this species is classified as Least Concern on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Species are listed as such due to their wide distribution, presumed large population, or because they are unlikely to be declining fast enough to qualify for listing in a more threatened category; the population trend was stable when assessed in 2006. Crotalus viridis nuntius Klauber, 1935, the Hopi rattlesnake, inh
Colorado is a state of the Western United States encompassing most of the southern Rocky Mountains as well as the northeastern portion of the Colorado Plateau and the western edge of the Great Plains. It is the 8th most extensive and 21st most populous U. S. state. The estimated population of Colorado was 5,695,564 on July 1, 2018, an increase of 13.25% since the 2010 United States Census. The state was named for the Colorado River, which early Spanish explorers named the Río Colorado for the ruddy silt the river carried from the mountains; the Territory of Colorado was organized on February 28, 1861, on August 1, 1876, U. S. President Ulysses S. Grant signed Proclamation 230 admitting Colorado to the Union as the 38th state. Colorado is nicknamed the "Centennial State" because it became a state one century after the signing of the United States Declaration of Independence. Colorado is bordered by Wyoming to the north, Nebraska to the northeast, Kansas to the east, Oklahoma to the southeast, New Mexico to the south, Utah to the west, touches Arizona to the southwest at the Four Corners.
Colorado is noted for its vivid landscape of mountains, high plains, canyons, plateaus and desert lands. Colorado is part of the western and southwestern United States, is one of the Mountain States. Denver is most populous city of Colorado. Residents of the state are known as Coloradans, although the antiquated term "Coloradoan" is used. Colorado is notable for its diverse geography, which includes alpine mountains, high plains, deserts with huge sand dunes, deep canyons. In 1861, the United States Congress defined the boundaries of the new Territory of Colorado by lines of latitude and longitude, stretching from 37°N to 41°N latitude, from 102°02'48"W to 109°02'48"W longitude. After 158 years of government surveys, the borders of Colorado are now defined by 697 boundary markers and 697 straight boundary lines. Colorado and Utah are the only states that have their borders defined by straight boundary lines with no natural features; the southwest corner of Colorado is the Four Corners Monument at 36°59'56"N, 109°2'43"W.
This is the only place in the United States where four states meet: Colorado, New Mexico and Utah. The summit of Mount Elbert at 14,440 feet elevation in Lake County is the highest point in Colorado and the Rocky Mountains of North America. Colorado is the only U. S. state that lies above 1,000 meters elevation. The point where the Arikaree River flows out of Yuma County and into Cheyenne County, Kansas, is the lowest point in Colorado at 3,317 feet elevation; this point, which holds the distinction of being the highest low elevation point of any state, is higher than the high elevation points of 18 states and the District of Columbia. A little less than half of Colorado is flat and rolling land. East of the Rocky Mountains are the Colorado Eastern Plains of the High Plains, the section of the Great Plains within Nebraska at elevations ranging from 3,350 to 7,500 feet; the Colorado plains are prairies but include deciduous forests and canyons. Precipitation averages 15 to 25 inches annually. Eastern Colorado is presently farmland and rangeland, along with small farming villages and towns.
Corn, hay and oats are all typical crops. Most villages and towns in this region boast both a grain elevator. Irrigation water is available from subterranean sources. Surface water sources include the South Platte, the Arkansas River, a few other streams. Subterranean water is accessed through artesian wells. Heavy use of wells for irrigation caused underground water reserves to decline. Eastern Colorado hosts considerable livestock, such as hog farms. 70% of Colorado's population resides along the eastern edge of the Rocky Mountains in the Front Range Urban Corridor between Cheyenne and Pueblo, Colorado. This region is protected from prevailing storms that blow in from the Pacific Ocean region by the high Rockies in the middle of Colorado; the "Front Range" includes Denver, Fort Collins, Castle Rock, Colorado Springs, Pueblo and other townships and municipalities in between. On the other side of the Rockies, the significant population centers in Western Colorado are the cities of Grand Junction and Montrose.
The Continental Divide of the Americas extends along the crest of the Rocky Mountains. The area of Colorado to the west of the Continental Divide is called the Western Slope of Colorado. West of the Continental Divide, water flows to the southwest via the Colorado River and the Green River into the Gulf of California. Within the interior of the Rocky Mountains are several large parks which are high broad basins. In the north, on the east side of the Continental Divide is the North Park of Colorado; the North Park is drained by the North Platte River, which flows north into Nebraska. Just to the south of North Park, but on the western side of the Continental Divide, is the Middle Park of Colorado, drained by the Colorado River; the South Park of Colorado is the region of the headwaters of the South Platte River. In southmost Colorado is the large San Luis Valley, where the headwaters of the Rio Grande are located; the valley sits between the Sangre De Cristo Mountains and San Juan Mountains, consists of large desert lands that run into the mountains.
The Rio Grande drains due south into New Mexico and Texas. Across the Sangre de Cristo Range to the east of the S