Worldly Wonders: Making Mountains


Ohhh the beauty of majestic mountains. I think most people can agree there is something powerful about seeing a mountain looming off in the distance. There is something even more powerful about climbing to the top of a mountain and looking down on the world. Mountains are truly spectacular, but do you know how they are made?

Mountains are created from the movement of tectonic plates. Some plates move apart (as they do in the mid-atlantic ridge) while some plates slowly collide into one another. This is how mountains are born. Over hundreds of thousands of years, tectonic plates crash into each other in slow motion– centimeter by centimeter–as one plate is subducted under the other pushing the lighter plate high into the air.

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Exposed North American and European Tectonic Plates

Something I recently learned is the the smaller a mountain ridge is, the older it is. Take the Appalachian Mountains for example, they are rounded and shorter than the Rockies. The Rockies are a newer mountain range and since they are newer, they haven’t had as much time to erode. This allows for the sharp peaks and angles we see in these mountains. The Appalachian Mountains used to look more rugged and taller until weather eroded them down to the rounded, dull peaks we see today.

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The Appalachian Mountains

The most astounding mountain range in the world is, of course, The Himalayas–home to Mount Everest. This mountain range is the newest in the world, created by the Indian tectonic plate smashing into Eurasian tectonic plate. I hope to see this mountain range in person one day. Some other mountain ranges I hope to visit in the future include:

  • The Swiss Alps
  • The Dolomites
  • The Grand Tetons (Rockies)

Have you visited any of these mountain ranges? What is your favorite mountain range?

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Erin founded the Wonderlost Travel blog in February of 2015 after her experience of studying abroad in Europe. Erin has had the opportunity to travel throughout the United States, Canada, Europe, and parts of South America and Asia. She enjoys writing about and photographing her travel experiences in order to inspire others to get out and follow their travel dreams. She has collaborated with tourism departments, restaurants, and other travel bloggers to share reviews and travel advice with readers in over 100 countries. Erin has a passion for traveling the world to experience other cultures and explore nature!

8 thoughts on “Worldly Wonders: Making Mountains

  1. Exploring mountains are one of my favourite experiences when traveling. The contrast in nature is often spectacular and because it’s hard to build cities on mountains, they’re often more remote and pristine.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I completely agree. I love traveling to cities, but I am trying to plan more nature-oriented trips now. There is nothing more wonderful than peaceful, beautiful nature. Thanks for reading!


  3. I love mountains. Norway have some old mountains from the caledonian orogeny, meaning they are about 400mya.
    I want to see the Dolomites, and I have seen the Alps but haven’t gone hiking there. They are beautiful mountains though and so much younger and “wilder” (pointier) than the rounded Norwegian mountains I know.

    Liked by 1 person

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