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Topic – The Cordillera

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The Cordillera

Location

The Cordillera is a region of mountains found on the west side of Canada, next to the Pacific Ocean. The Cordillera region includes the province of British Columbia and some parts of Yukon, Alberta, and the Northwest Territories.

 

Physical Features

The Rocky Mountains

The Cordillera region includes many different landforms: mountains, hills, plateaus, and valleys. There are also many lakes and major river systems. The Fraser River system is the largest. There are also several mountain ranges in the Cordillera region including the Columbia Mountains, Rocky Mountains, and the Coast Mountains.

These mountain ranges were formed millions of years ago, when enormous folds of rocks bent and crushed against each other.

Climate

The northern part of the Cordillera region has cold winters and cool summers. There are warmer temperatures in the southern part of the Cordillera region. Along the coast, there are mild winters, warm summers, and lots of rainfall. The ocean helps to keep areas near the coast cooler in the summer and warmer in the winter.

Vegetation

The Giant Sequoia

• Most forests in the Cordillera region are coniferous. The Giant Sequoia is the largest coniferous trees in Canada. They are found in the rainforest near the Pacific Coast.

• Many plants, shrubs, and trees grow larger on the coast compared to other places.

• There is little vegetation at the tops of the high mountains.

• Grassland is the natural vegetation of much of the interior plateau.

Wildlife

• polar bears and caribou in the far north

• birds such as eagles, ravens, and owls

• marine life such as whales, sea lions, and seals

• mammals such as deer, elk, and lynx

• fish such as salmon, trout, halibut, herring, and northern pike

Natural Resources

zinc

• Okanagan Valley for growing fruit

• gold, silver, copper, and zinc

• forests

• fish such as salmon and halibut

• lead, sand, and gravel

• hydroelectricity


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