REPUBLIC OF COSTA RICA


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GENERAL INFORMATIONS: Mountain ranges

Mountain ranges

In Costa Rica there are four mountain ranges called Cordilleras: Guanacaste, Tilaran, Central and Talamanka. They are watershed which separates carribbean and pacific regions. Cordilleras run parallelly to isthmus axis and are strongly devided by erosion. They are separated by dales, valleys and passes.

Cordillera Central - It stands to the north of San Jose, is made up of several large volcanoes Poas (2.704 m.a.s.l.), Barva (2.906 m.a.s.l.), Irazu (3.432 m.a.s.l.), Viejo (2.060 m.a.s.l.), Congo (2.014 m.a.s.l.), Cacho Negro (2.136 m.a.s.l.), Platanar (2.183 m.a.s.l.), Porvenir (2.263 m.a.s.l.) and Turrialba (3.339 m.n.p.m.). Its slopes form the Central Valley and are very fertile. At its foot are centered the biggest concentration of inhabitants in Costa Rica.

Cordillera Guanacaste - It stretches from Lake Nicaragua southeastward. It consists of active volcanoes, in some of whose steaming vents provide geothermal energy: Cacao (1.659 m.a.s.l.), Orosi (1.487 m.a.s.l.), Miravalles (2.028 m.a.s.l.), Rincon de la Vieja (1.806 m.a.s.l.), Tenorio (1.916 m.a.s.l.), Arenal (1.633 m.a.s.l.). It`s separated from the other mountains to the southeast by lake and volcano Arenal.

Cordillera Talamanca - (Blue Mountains). It`s the highest nonvolcanic mountain massif in Central America that stretches south-east down into Panama. Only here exist distinct postglaciar forms. Within that there are a few peaks rising above the level of 3.000 metres. For example: Chirripo Grande (3.819 m.a.s.l. - the highest peak in the country), Cerro Terbi (3.760 m.a.s.l.), Cerro Ventisqueros (3.812 m.a.s.l.), Cerro Durika (3.280 m.a.s.l.), Cerro Utyum (3.078 m.a.s.l.), Cerro de la Muerte (3.471 m.a.s.l.), Cerro Kamuk (3.549 m.a.s.l.), Cerro Echandi (3.167 m.a.s.l.).

Cordillera Tilaran - It consists of Abangares, Cedar and Aguacate Hills, which used to be covered by cloud forests (in 1815 the gold was discovered there). It consists of rocks of volcanic origin (now there is no volcanic activity) with few gold deposits. Through the slopes of Aguacate Hills winds the most spectacular Puntarenas - San Jose road (in that hill in 1820 the gold has been started to extract).


 
2004; SLUPSK; Rafal Cezary Piechocinski