San Juan Mountains
The San Juan Mountains are a high and rugged mountain range in the Rocky Mountains in southwestern Colorado and northwestern New Mexico. The area is mineralized and figured in the gold and silver mining industry of early Colorado. Major towns, all old mining camps, include Creede, Lake City, Silverton and Telluride. Large scale mining has ended in the region, although independent prospectors still work claims throughout the range; the last large scale mines were the Sunnyside Mine near Silverton, which operated until late in the 20th century and the Idarado Mine on Red Mountain Pass that closed down in the 1970s. Famous old San Juan mines include the Camp Bird and Smuggler Union mines, both located between Telluride and Ouray; the Summitville mine was the scene of a major environmental disaster in the 1990s when the liner of a cyanide-laced tailing pond began leaking heavily. Summitville is in the Summitville caldera, one of many extinct volcanoes making up the San Juan volcanic field. One, La Garita Caldera, is 35 miles in diameter.
Large beds of lava, some extending under the floor of the San Luis Valley, are characteristic of the eastern slope of the San Juans. Tourism is now a major part of the regional economy, with the narrow gauge railway between Durango and Silverton being an attraction in the summer. Jeeping is popular on the old trails which linked the historic mining camps, including the notorious Black Bear Road. Visiting old ghost towns is popular, as is wilderness trekking and mountain climbing. Many of the old mining camps are now popular sites of summer homes. Though the San Juans are steep and receive a lot of snow, so far only Telluride has made the transition to a major ski resort. Purgatory Resort, once known as Durango Mountain Resort, is a small ski area 26 miles north of Durango. There is skiing on Wolf Creek Pass at the Wolf Creek ski area. Silverton Mountain ski area has begun operation near Silverton; the Rio Grande drains the east side of the range. The other side of the San Juans, the western slope of the continental divide, is drained by tributaries of the San Juan and Gunnison rivers, which all flow into the Colorado River.
The San Juan and Uncompahgre National Forests cover a large portion of the San Juan Mountains. The San Juan Mountains are distinctive for their high altitude plateaus and peaks; as a result, facilities in the towns and cities of the region are among the highest in the nation. Telluride Airport, at an elevation of 9,070 feet, is the highest in the United States with scheduled commercial service. Note: This is only a partial list of important peaks in the San Juans, listing peaks by prominence only. There are dozens more summits over 12,000 feet. Mining operators in the San Juan mountain area formed the San Juan District Mining Association in 1903, as a direct result of a Western Federation of Miners proposal to the Telluride Mining Association for the eight-hour day, approved in a referendum by 72 percent of Colorado voters; the new association consolidated the power of thirty-six mining properties in San Miguel and San Juan counties. The SJDMA refused to consider any reduction in hours or increase in wages, helping to provoke a bitter strike.
Southern Rocky Mountains Sneffels Range Cimmaron Range Needle Mountains La Garita Mountains Cochetopa Hills La Plata Mountains Mountain ranges of Colorado Bove, D. et al.. Geochronology and geology of Late Oligocene through Miocene volcanism and mineralization in the western San Juan Mountains, Colorado. Washington, D. C.: U. S. Department of the Interior, U. S. Geological Survey. Lippman, P. W.. Geologic map of southwestern Colorado. Reston, VA: U. S. Department of the Interior, U. S. Geological Survey. Widerange.org: Photos of the San Juan Mountains San Juan Mountains @ Peakbagger Southern Rocky Mountains @ Peakbagger Rocky Mountains @ Peakbagger
The Book Cliffs are a series of desert mountains and cliffs in western Colorado and eastern Utah, in the western United States. They are so named because the cliffs of Cretaceous sandstone that cap many of the south-facing buttes appear similar to a shelf of books. Stretching nearly 200 miles from east to west, the Book Cliffs begin where the Colorado River descends south through De Beque Canyon into the Grand Valley to Price Canyon; the Book Cliffs appear along the southern and western edge of the Tavaputs Plateau. The cliffs are composed of sedimentary materials; the Book Cliffs are within the Colorado Plateau geologic province. In the Colorado stretch of the Book Cliffs, abandoned coal mines are present, as significant coal resources were present in the region; these mines are now capped for safety, but several fatalities of recreational hikers have occurred at these mines since 1989. In some places, "wild" horses can be found in the Book Cliffs, for example, a band of four was spotted near the abandoned Gearhart coal mine in Mesa County, Colorado.
The Book Cliffs are one of the world's best places to study sequence stratigraphy. In the 1980s, Exxon scientists used the Cretaceous strata of the Book Cliffs to develop the science of sequence stratigraphy; the Book Cliffs have preserved excellent strata of the foreland basin of the ancient Western Interior Seaway that stretched north from the Gulf of Mexico to the Yukon in the Cretaceous time. Components of deltaic and shallow marine reservoirs are well preserved in the Book Cliffs. Large mammals found in the Book Cliffs include coyotes, mountain lions, mule deer, black bears, American bison as an extension of the Henry Mountains bison herd and bighorn sheep. In January, 2009, Utah Division of Wildlife Resources officials transplanted 31 bison from the Henry Mountains bison herd to the Book Cliffs; the new group joined 14 animals released in August, 2008 from a private herd on the nearby Uintah and Ouray Indian Reservation. Since this herd is located 100 miles north of the Henry Mountains, across harsh, desert terrain, it should be considered as a separate herd, the Book Cliffs bison herd.
List of mountains in Colorado List of mountains in Utah "Book Cliffs". SummitPost.org. Cretaceous Paleogeography - Showing Western Interior Seaway The Soils of Western Colorado Mesa and Montrose Counties
Chair Mountain is a prominent mountain summit in the Elk Mountains range of the Rocky Mountains of North America. The 12,727-foot peak is located in the Raggeds Wilderness of Gunnison National Forest, 5.0 miles west by south of the Town of Marble in Gunnison County, United States. List of Colorado mountain ranges List of Colorado mountain summits List of Colorado fourteeners List of Colorado 4000 meter prominent summits List of the most prominent summits of Colorado List of Colorado county high points
A mountain range or hill range is a series of mountains or hills ranged in a line and connected by high ground. A mountain system or mountain belt is a group of mountain ranges with similarity in form and alignment that have arisen from the same cause an orogeny. Mountain ranges are formed by a variety of geological processes, but most of the significant ones on Earth are the result of plate tectonics. Mountain ranges are found on many planetary mass objects in the Solar System and are a feature of most terrestrial planets. Mountain ranges are segmented by highlands or mountain passes and valleys. Individual mountains within the same mountain range do not have the same geologic structure or petrology, they may be a mix of different orogenic expressions and terranes, for example thrust sheets, uplifted blocks, fold mountains, volcanic landforms resulting in a variety of rock types. Most geologically young mountain ranges on the Earth's land surface are associated with either the Pacific Ring of Fire or the Alpide Belt.
The Pacific Ring of Fire includes the Andes of South America, extends through the North American Cordillera along the Pacific Coast, the Aleutian Range, on through Kamchatka, Taiwan, the Philippines, Papua New Guinea, to New Zealand. The Andes is 7,000 kilometres long and is considered the world's longest mountain system; the Alpide belt includes Indonesia and Southeast Asia, through the Himalaya, Caucasus Mountains, Balkan Mountains fold mountain range, the Alps, ends in the Spanish mountains and the Atlas Mountains. The belt includes other European and Asian mountain ranges; the Himalayas contain the highest mountains in the world, including Mount Everest, 8,848 metres high and traverses the border between China and Nepal. Mountain ranges outside these two systems include the Arctic Cordillera, the Urals, the Appalachians, the Scandinavian Mountains, the Great Dividing Range, the Altai Mountains and the Hijaz Mountains. If the definition of a mountain range is stretched to include underwater mountains the Ocean Ridges form the longest continuous mountain system on Earth, with a length of 65,000 kilometres.
The mountain systems of the earth are characterized by a tree structure, where mountain ranges can contain sub-ranges. The sub-range relationship is expressed as a parent-child relationship. For example, the White Mountains of New Hampshire and the Blue Ridge Mountains are sub-ranges of the Appalachian Mountains. Equivalently, the Appalachians are the parent of the White Mountains and Blue Ridge Mountains, the White Mountains and the Blue Ridge Mountains are children of the Appalachians; the parent-child expression extends to the sub-ranges themselves: the Sandwich Range and the Presidential Range are children of the White Mountains, while the Presidential Range is parent to the Northern Presidential Range and Southern Presidential Range. The position of mountains influences climate, such as snow; when air masses move up and over mountains, the air cools producing orographic precipitation. As the air descends on the leeward side, it warms again and is drier, having been stripped of much of its moisture.
A rain shadow will affect the leeward side of a range. Mountain ranges are subjected to erosional forces which work to tear them down; the basins adjacent to an eroding mountain range are filled with sediments which are buried and turned into sedimentary rock. Erosion is at work while the mountains are being uplifted until the mountains are reduced to low hills and plains; the early Cenozoic uplift of the Rocky Mountains of Colorado provides an example. As the uplift was occurring some 10,000 feet of Mesozoic sedimentary strata were removed by erosion over the core of the mountain range and spread as sand and clays across the Great Plains to the east; this mass of rock was removed as the range was undergoing uplift. The removal of such a mass from the core of the range most caused further uplift as the region adjusted isostatically in response to the removed weight. Rivers are traditionally believed to be the principal cause of mountain range erosion, by cutting into bedrock and transporting sediment.
Computer simulation has shown that as mountain belts change from tectonically active to inactive, the rate of erosion drops because there are fewer abrasive particles in the water and fewer landslides. Mountains on other planets and natural satellites of the Solar System are isolated and formed by processes such as impacts, though there are examples of mountain ranges somewhat similar to those on Earth. Saturn's moon Titan and Pluto, in particular exhibit large mountain ranges in chains composed of ices rather than rock. Examples include the Mithrim Montes and Doom Mons on Titan, Tenzing Montes and Hillary Montes on Pluto; some terrestrial planets other than Earth exhibit rocky mountain ranges, such as Maxwell Montes on Venus taller than any on Earth and Tartarus Montes on Mars, Jupiter's moon Io has mountain ranges formed from tectonic processes including Boösaule Montes, Dorian Montes, Hi'iaka Montes and Euboea Montes. Peakbagger Ranges Home Page Bivouac.com
Flat Tops (Colorado)
Flat Tops is a mountain range located in Colorado within the Routt and White River National Forests. The area is home to 110 Lakes. Much of the range is within the boundary of the Flat Tops Wilderness Area; the Flat Tops Wilderness Area can be accessed by Colorado Rd 7 through the town of Yampa, in Routt County Colorado. The Flat Tops range is home to a wide variety of plants and animals, including many large mammals such as Moose, Mule deer, Black bear, Cougars; this area has been affected by Yellow toadflax. Mountain ranges of Colorado U. S. Geological Survey Geographic Names Information System: The Flat Tops
Elk Mountains (Colorado)
The Elk Mountains are a high, rugged mountain range in the Rocky Mountains of west-central Colorado in the United States. The mountains sit on the western side of the Continental Divide in southern Pitkin and northern Gunnison counties, in the area southwest of Aspen, south of the Roaring Fork River valley, east of the Crystal River; the range sits northeast of the West Elk Mountains. Much of the range is located within the White River National Forest and the Gunnison National Forest, as well as the Maroon Bells-Snowmass Wilderness and Raggeds Wilderness; the Elk Mountains rise nearly 9,000 ft. above the Roaring Fork Valley to the north. The highest peaks in the range are its fourteeners, Castle Peak, Maroon Peak, Capitol Peak, Snowmass Mountain, Pyramid Peak, North Maroon Peak. Maroon Peak and North Maroon Peak are collectively known as the Maroon Bells, a popular destination for recreation alpinism. Mount Sopris sits at the northwest end of the range and dominates the skyline of the lower Roaring Fork Valley and the town of Carbondale, serving as an unofficial symbol of the area.
Additional notable peaks in the range include: Cathedral Peak, 13,943 ft, near Pyramid Peak Hagerman Peak, 13,841 ft, near Snowmass Mountain Snowmass Peak, 13,620 ft, near Hagerman Peak Clark Peak, 13,580 ft, near Capitol Peak Treasure Mountain, 13,528 ft, southwest of the Maroon Bells Mount Owen, 13,058 ft, high point of the Ruby Range Mount Sopris, 12,965 ft, north west of Capitol Peak Chair Mountain, 12,721 ft, high point of The Raggeds Crested Butte, 12,162 ft, home of Crested Butte Mountain Resort Whitehouse Mountain, 11,975 ft, northwest of Treasure MountainThe range provides a formidable barrier to travel and is traversed only by backroad passes and trails, including Schofield Pass, Pearl Pass, Taylor Pass. State Highway 133 traverses McClure Pass, at the western end of the range; the range has been the site of mining activity since the days of the Colorado Silver Boom, which saw the founding of mining towns such as Aspen and Ashcroft. In the late 19th century, the western and southern flank of the range became the site of intense coal mining activity which continues to the present day.
Treasure Mountain, overlooking the town of Marble, is home to the famous Yule Marble Quarry. Quarried marble was used to create The Tomb of the Unknowns, the Lincoln Memorial, Denver Post Office and other buildings; the range receives a great deal of snowfall due to its position to the west of the continental divide and the westerly origin of many winter storms. This is exploited by the ski areas in the vicinity of Aspen, which are located on the flanks of smaller mountains alongside the Roaring Fork Valley. West Elk Mountains "Rocky Mountains". Peakbagger.com. Geology of the Elk Mountains
Elk Mountain (Routt County, Colorado)
Elk Mountain is a summit in Routt County, Colorado. The mountain lies to the northwest of Steamboat Springs and is seen from the city from along Lincoln Avenue, Steamboat's main street; the mountain is easily seen from Mount Werner, the home of the Steamboat Ski Resort. The Elk River flows near the mountain just before its confluence with the Yampa River in the Yampa Valley. Locals refer to the mountain as "The Sleeping Giant," due to its resemblance to the profile of a prone person at sleep when viewed from Mount Werner or Steamboat Springs, have created legends to explain this appearance. There are at least six other summits named Elk Mountain in Colorado; this Elk Mountain in Routt County is not part of the Elk Mountains in West Central Colorado. Instead, it is one of the easternmost peaks in the Elkhead Mountains