Portal:Mountains

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Introduction

Silvretta panorama from the Ochsenkopf
Silvretta panorama from the Ochsenkopf
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. A mountain differs from a plateau in having a limited summit area, and is larger 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...)

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Selected mountain-related landform

Side valleys and tributary valleys are valleys whose brooks or rivers flow into greater ones.

Upstream, the valleys can be classified in an increasing order which is equivalent to the usual orographic order: the tributaries are ordered from those nearest to the source of the river to those nearest to the mouth of the river. A confluence is where two or more tributaries or rivers flow together. (Full article...)

Selected mountain range

Cordillera Orientale de Colombia.jpg

The Cordillera Oriental (English: Eastern Ranges) is the widest of the three branches of the Colombian Andes. The range extends from south to north dividing from the Colombian Massif in Huila Department to Norte de Santander Department where it splits into the Serranía del Perijá and the Cordillera de Mérida in Venezuelan Andes. The highest peak is Ritacuba Blanco at 5,410 m (17,750 ft) in the Sierra Nevada del Cocuy. (Full article...)

Selected mountain type

A nunatak (from Inuit nunataq) is the summit or ridge of a mountain that protrudes from an ice field or glacier that otherwise covers most of the mountain or ridge. They are also called glacial islands. Examples are natural pyramidal peaks. When rounded by glacial action, smaller rock promontories may be referred to as rognons.

The word is of Greenlandic origin and has been used in English since the 1870s. (Full article...)

Selected climbing article

A powder snow avalanche in the Himalayas near Mount Everest.

An avalanche (also called a snow slide) is a rapid flow of snow down a slope, such as a hill or mountain.

Avalanches can be set off spontaneously, by such factors as increased precipitation or snow pack weakening, or by external means such as humans, animals, and earthquakes. Primarily composed of flowing snow and air, large avalanches have the capability to capture and move ice, rocks, and trees. (Full article...)

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General images

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

Selected skiing article

Telemark ski racer executing Telemark's unique lunging or "free heel" turn.

Telemark skiing is a skiing technique that combines elements of Alpine and Nordic skiing, using a squatting motion on downhill skis. Telemark skiing is named after the Telemark region of Norway, where the discipline originated. Sondre Norheim is often credited for first demonstrating the turn in ski races, which included cross country, slalom and jumping, in Norway around 1868. Sondre Norheim also experimented with ski and binding design, introducing side cuts to skis and heel bindings (like a cable). (Full article...)

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