Cliff

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The Trango Towers in Pakistan. Their vertical faces are the world's tallest cliffs. Trango Tower center; Trango Monk center left; Trango II far left; Great Trango right.
The tallest cliff in Europe, in Norway

A cliff is a vertical or very steep natural wall of rock.

Cliffs are common on coasts, in mountainous areas, escarpments and along rivers. Cliffs are usually formed by rock that is resistant to erosion and weathering. Sedimentary rocks most likely to form cliffs include sandstone, limestone, chalk, and dolomite. Igneous rocks such as granite and basalt also often form cliffs. An escarpment (or scarp) is a type of cliff, formed by the movement of a geologic fault, or a landslide. Cliffs are known for forming major geographical features such as waterfalls.

The tallest cliff in the solar system may be Verona Rupes, an approximately 20 km (12 mile) high cliff on Miranda, a moon of the planet Uranus. [1]

The Ordnance Survey distinguishes between cliffs (continuous line along the top edge with projections down the face) and outcrops (continuous lines along lower edge).

Major cliffs[change | edit source]

Asia[change | edit source]

Above Sea

Above Land

Europe[change | edit source]

Above Sea

Above land

North America[change | edit source]

  • Mount Thor, Baffin Island, Canada; 1,370 m (4,500 ft) total; top 480 m (1,600 ft) is overhanging. This is commonly regarded as being the largest purely vertical drop on Earth at 1,250 m (4,100 ft).
  • The sheer north face of Polar Sun Spire, in the Sam Ford fjord of Baffin Island, has been reported as exceeding Mount Thor's west face in height.[2]
  • Ketil's west face in Tasermiut, Greenland (also known as God's Thumbnail), has been reported as 1,400 – 1,450 m high, but there are arguments.[3][4]

Other notable cliffs include:

South America[change | edit source]

Africa[change | edit source]

Above Sea

Oceania[change | edit source]

Above Sea

References[change | edit source]

Footnotes[change | edit source]