Foothills

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Rocky Mountain foothills near Denver, Colorado

Foothills or piedmont are geographically defined as gradual increases in elevation at the base of a mountain range, higher hill range or an upland area. They are a transition zone between plains and low relief hills and the adjacent topographically higher mountains, hills, and uplands.[1] Frequently foothills consist of alluvial fans, coalesced alluvial fans, and dissected plateaus.

Description[edit]

Foothills primarily border mountains, especially those which are reached through low ridges that increase in size closer and closer to the mountain,[2] but can also border uplands and higher hills.[3]

Examples[edit]

Areas where foothills exist, or areas commonly referred to as the foothills, include the:

Synonyms[edit]

Another word for a foothill region is "piedmont", derived from "foot of the mount" in Romance languages.[4] The Piedmont region of Italy lies in the foothills of the Alps, and several other foothills in other parts of the world are called "piedmont", and include:

Ecosystems of piedmonts (foothills) are often known as submontane zones, relating to the higher montane ecosystems.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Easterbrook, Don J. (1999). Surface Processes and Landforms (second ed.). Upper Saddle River, New Jersey: Prentice Hall. p. 530. ISBN 978-0-13-860958-0.
  2. ^ Juanico, Meliton B.; Agno, Lydia N. Physical Geography. Goodwill Trading Co., Inc. p. 113. ISBN 978-971-12-0113-5.
  3. ^ "foothill". Merriam-Webster. Retrieved 9 April 2016.
  4. ^ "piedmont". Oxford English Dictionary (Online ed.). Oxford University Press. (Subscription or participating institution membership required.)