Quick Write: Pick one of the following topics and write a paragraph about it. Describe one event from your Winter Break. Explain one of your New Year’s Resolution and why you made it. The United States and Canada Physical Geography Landforms The U.S. and Canada have several major mountain ranges: A. The Rocky Mountains B. The Appalachian Mountains C. Pacific Coastal Ranges The Rocky Mountains The Rocky Mountains extend about 3,000 miles from Alaska south to New Mexico. They are younger and taller than the Appalachian Mountains. Some soar over 14,000 ft. The Continental Divide is the line of highest points in the Rockies that marks the separation of rivers flowing eastward and westward. http://worldatlas.com/webimage/countrys/nalnd.htm The Appalachian Mountains The Appalachian Mountains extend about 1,600 miles north to south from Newfoundland in Canada to Alabama. Pacific Coastal Ranges A series of small mountain ranges stretch from southern California to Washington. These ranges are low in elevation and right on the coast. They make the coastline rugged and steep. This area is also on the Ring of Fire and has many active and dormant volcanoes (Mount Rainier and Mount Saint Helens). Earthquakes are common in this area. Include the Sierra Nevada, the Cascade Range, & the Alaska Range (Mt. McKinley) Questions, Part I 1. What are the three main mountain ranges in the United States and Canada? 2. The is the line of highest points in the Rockies that marks the separation of rivers flowing eastward and westward. 3. Which mountain range is in the picture? 4. Which mountain range is on the Ring of Fire? 5. What force created those mountains? Other Landforms A. The Canadian Shield B. Interior Lowlands C. Atlantic and Gulf Coastal Plains D. Basin and Range E. Great Plains F. Grand Canyon G. Piedmont Canadian Shield The Canadian Shield is a rocky, mainly flat area around Hudson Bay. Created by glacial erosion. http://www2.marianopolis.edu/quebechistory/encyclopedia/GeogofCan.htm http://www.visualsunlimited.com/browse/vu493/vu49306.html http://www2.worldbook.com/features/earth/html/history_precambrian.htm Interior Lowlands An area that spreads from the Appalachian Mountains to the Mississippi River. This area is mostly flat with rolling hills. Arctic and Gulf Coastal Plains These are flat areas that stretch along the Gulf of Mexico in the south and the Arctic Ocean in the north. The Arctic Coastal Plain is tundra. http://www.nativeecosystems.org/centralplains/ http://www.accountingdirectory.us/12.jpg http://www.stormtrack.org/forum/viewtopic.php?t=5933 http://www.geo.hunter.cuny.edu/bight/coastal.ht Basin and Range This area is mostly in Nevada and it consists of rocky outcroppings of rock and large depressions. Death Valley: the hottest and lowest place in the United States. Why is Death Valley so dry? Questions, Part II 5. What’s this called? (the red part) 6. _______ is the area that spreads from the Appalachian Mountains to the Mississippi River. 7. What is the hottest and lowest place in the United States? Why is it like that? Great Plains A largely treeless flat (actually slopes downward to Mississippi River) area that extends from Canada down to Mexico. The soil is very fertile and good for farming but the climate can be harsh with cold winters and hot summers. This area also gets many tornadoes. http://tapestry.usgs.gov/features/13coastalplain.html http://www.gpisd.net/programs.htm Grand Canyon The Grand Canyon was formed by water erosion from the Colorado River. The canyon is 277 miles long and ranges in width from 4 to 18 miles. Most of the canyon is in Grand Canyon National Park in Arizona. http://www.nationalgeographic.com/adventure/0506/great_parks_02_map.html http://pinker.wjh.harvard.edu/photos/american_west/pages/tree in Grand Canyon.htm Piedmont Piedmont is a plateau region located in the eastern United States between the Atlantic Coastal Plain and the main Appalachian Mountains stretching from New Jersey in the north to central Alabama in the south. Fall Line: marks the place where the higher land drops to the Plains, resulting in waterfalls and rapids Groups of Islands A. B. C. D. E. Hawaiian archipelago - A group of 19 islands and islets in the Pacific Ocean that formed over a hotspot in the earth’s crust. The largest island, Hawaii, has an active volcano. Aleutian Islands - A chain of over 300 small volcanic islands that extend from Alaska to Russia. Manhattan Island: major economic center Canada’s Islands: Newfoundland, Prince Edward Island, Cape Breton and Vancouver Island Greenland: Denmark Territory, world’s largest island http://www.mopedhospital.com/img/blu-keys-map.gif http://www.bikehike.com/canada/canada_trip01.html http://www.fvalk.com/images/Earth_hrpt/Winter/Greenland-10!.gif http://www.cruise.com/orient/photos/list.html http://www.geoatlas.com/us/echantillons.htm Questions, Part III 8. The Great Plains are important, because this is where ____ takes place. 9. How was the Grand Canyon formed? 10. The place where the higher land drops to the Plains, resulting in waterfalls and rapids, is called the ____. 11. Which five islands make up Canada’s islands? Rivers Some major rivers in the United States are: A. Mississippi B. St. Lawrence C. Colorado D. Columbia E. Rio Grande Mississippi River The Mississippi River has a length of 2,340 miles. The river is an important transportation route from the grain producing states of middle America to the Gulf of Mexico. • The Mississippi drains all or part of 31 U.S. states and 2 Canadian provinces. St. Lawrence River The St. Lawrence River connects the Great Lakes to the Atlantic Ocean. The river has a system of locks that allow large ships to transport loads of minerals and goods. Part of the river serves as the boarder between Canada and the United States. • Niagara Falls, located on a river connecting Lake Ontario and Lake Erie, is a major source of hydroelectric power for Canada and the United States. Questions, Part IV 12. Which areas of the United states and Canada would you predict are the most densely populated? Why do you think so? 13. Why is the Mississippi River important? 14. Which river is part of the U.S. / Canada border? 15. Why is Niagara Falls important? Colorado River The Colorado River flows from Colorado to the Gulf of California. The river formed the Grand Canyon by erosion and it is an important source of fresh water in an arid region. The Hoover Dam on the river provides electricity for Los Angeles. Columbia River The Columbia River is the fourth largest river in the U.S. and the largest river in the Pacific Northwest. The river has many dams that are used to create hydroelectric power. The dams have impacted the local salmon industry. Other Water Features A. B. C. D. E. F. Some other important water features are: Gulf of Mexico Great Lakes Arctic Ocean Pacific Ocean Atlantic Ocean Hudson Bay www.tceq.state.tx.us home.comcast.net Great Lakes Formed by glacial erosion Provide a link between inland and coastal waterways Lead to the development of Chicago Questions, Part V 16. What does “hydroelectric” mean? 17. How were the Great Lakes formed? www.world-maps.co.uk http://www.chem.ucla.edu/~alice/explorations/churchill/landscapes.htm http://www.john-daly.com/p-bears/ • Fuels An abundance of resources, such as fossil fuels and minerals, has contributed to the prosperity of the United States and Canada. Natural Resources (cont.) • Minerals Gold, silver, and copper are found in the Rocky Mountains. Nickel and iron are mined in parts of the Canadian Shield. • Deposits of low-grade iron ore exist in northern Minnesota and Michigan. • Canada supplies much of the world’s potash, copper, and silver. Natural Resources (cont.) • Timber Today forests cover less than 50 percent of Canada and just 30 percent of the United States. • Commercial loggers face the challenge of harvesting trees while preserving the remaining forests. Natural Resources (cont.) • Fishing The coastal waters of the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans and the Gulf of Mexico are important sources of fish and other sea animals. • Because of overfishing, however, the Grand Banks, off Canada’s southeast coast, are now off limits to cod fishers. Climate Canada and the United States are in the middle and high latitudes. The most common climates are: A. Humid Subtropical and Continental B. Semiarid and Arid C. Marine West Coast and Mediterranean D. Tundra and Icecap Climate Most of the Eastern United States is humid subtropical. This climate zone has a mild winter and hot humid summers. The Northern states are humid continental. They have much colder winters but the summers can still be hot and uncomfortable. Climate Semiarid = Great Plains into the Southwest Arid = Southwest Marine West Coast = Coast of Oregon and Washington Mediterranean = Coast of Southern California Tundra = Northern Canada and Alaska Tropical Wet = Hawaii The tundra is a flat treeless plain with lichens, shrubs, and some flowers. The taiga is a coniferous forest that grows in subarctic climates. Only coniferous trees grow because of the Lack of sunlight in the wintertime. Questions, Part VI 18. What is “overfishing”? Is overfishing part of sustainable development? 19. What’s “tundra”? 20. What’s “taiga”?