The Plate Tectonic Tour

Autumn Forssell

San Andreas Fault

The San Andreas Fault is located in California on a transform boundary between the Pacific Plate and the North American Plate. Land forms in the San Andreas Fault include escarpments, narrow ridges, and small ponds. There are also many stream channels, lakes, and valleys. Because this fault is located on a transform boundary there are many earthquakes. Because of the 1906 earthquake in the San Francisco region roads, fences, rows of trees and bushes were offset several yards. The distance from the DFW airport to the SFO airtport is about 1,700 miles. It would take about 3 hours and 50 minutes to get there by plane.

Andes Mountains

The Andes Mountains are located on the western edge of South America, from Venezuela all the way down to the southern tip of South America. The Mountains are found between the Nazca and South American Plate. The Andes Mountain are home to many volcanoes and glaciers. In 1960 there was a large earthquake in Chile because the Nazca plate was sub-ducting under the south american plate. From the DFW airport to the Salta Argentina airport is about 4,496 miles. It would take around 20 hours to get there by plane.


The divergent boundary between the Eurasian and North American plate is what created Iceland. Some land forms in ice land include volcanoes, glaciers, waterfalls, geysers, and sea cliffs. In the past Iceland has had many earthquakes that have cause severe damage. From the DFW airport to the airport in Reykjavík, Iceland it would take about 15 hours to travel 3,756 miles by plane.

Topographic Map

Topographic maps have lines called contour lines. The contour lines represent elevation, the more lines the higher the elevation. Between each contour line is a contour interval. This tells you exactly what the elevation is. If the lines are closer together is has a steeper slope. If they are farther apart the slope is more gradual.