Pacific Cordillera (Canada)

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The Pacific Cordillera (Canada) is a top-level physiographic region of Canada. This cordillera is part of the North American Cordillera; the mountain ranges in this region were covered during the Pleistocene by the Cordilleran Ice Sheet. The extent of the Cordilleran ice sheet gives perspective on the geographic extent of this region, extending from coastal mountains in Alaska, south through most of the Yukon and British Columbia, bordered by the Rocky Mountains to the East, to stretch its margin beyond the Canada–United States border with five extensive lobes reaching into the mountain valleys of Montana and Washington.[1]

The Cordillera mountains were formed by the collision of tectonic plates and stray islands from the far East coast, causing the crust to buckle forming the mountains that we know today; this is the youngest of the three primary geographic regions of Canada, the others being the Canadian Shield and Great Plains. This designation is peculiar to Canada because the country's intramontane plateaus are narrow and may be considered together with adjoining ranges.

Well known mountain ranges can be found at the Pacific Cordillera, including the famous Rocky Mountain range, and the coastal mountain range stretching across British Columbia; such places are major tourist attractions and are basis of economy for the province of British Columbia.

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  1. ^ D. B. Booth. (1987). Timing and processes of deglaciation along the southern margin of the Cordilleran ice sheet. Pp. 71-90, in W. F. Ruddiman and H. E. Wright, Jr. eds. North America and adjacent oceans during the last deglaciation: Boulder, Colorado, Geological Society of America, the Geology of North America, v. K-3.