Mountain Building

The Mountain Process

Fault-Block Mountains: These mountains form when faults or cracks in the earth's crust force some materials or blocks of rock up and others down. Instead of the earth folding over, the earth's crust fractures (pulls apart). It breaks up into blocks or chunks. Sometimes these blocks of rock move up and down, as they move apart and blocks of rock end up being stacked on one another.


Volcanic Mountains: These mountains are formed when molten rock (magma) deep within the earth, erupts, and piles upon the surface. Magna is called lava when it breaks through the earth's crust. When the ash and lava cools, it builds a cone of rock. Rock and lava pile up, layer on top of layer.


Fold Mountains: Are the most common type of mountain. The world’s largest mountain ranges are fold mountains. These ranges were formed over millions of years. Fold mountains are formed when two plates collide head on, and their edges crumbled, much the same way as a piece of paper folds when pushed together. The upward folds are known as anticlines, and the downward folds are synclines.

Types of Mountains on Earth

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