Talk:Mountain range

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Expand or merge with "mountain"?[edit]

Is there enough to be said about mountain ranges or should this article be merged with mountain? Nurg 04:46, 6 May 2006 (UTC)

Mountain range needs to be split, not merged. It seems that it's all piled up here. Mountain ranges are part of a mountain systems and mountain chains and are divided into various plateaus, provinces and, on rarer occasions, ridges, massifs (sub-ranges), and individual mountains. A mountain system however is often used as a general term which, seems in wikipedia, is replaced with a mountain range. Aleksandr Grigoryev (talk) 14:47, 18 August 2010 (UTC)


My geology reference is the 1948 edition of Physical Geology by Chester R. Longwell et al., so perhaps the definition in the intro graph of the accompanying article reflects 60 years of decreasing vagueness. But i'd like to see evidence that the following is outmoded -- and even if it is, IMO earlier usage is worth discussion in the article.

... Descriptions of the larger units or their parts employ somewhat loosely the terms range, system, and chain. As it is desirable to use descriptive terms with a definite meaning, the usage proposed many years ago by J. D. Dana is followed here.
A mountain range is either a single large, complex ridge or a series of clearly related ridges that make up a fairly continuous and compact unit. Excellent types are the Sierra Nevada in eastern California ... and the Front Range of Colorado. A group of ranges that are similar in their general form, structure, and alignment, and presumably owe their origin to the same general causes, constitutes a mountain system. ...
But a still more comprehensive term is needed to refer to a series of chains or systems that make a more or less unified belt of vast extent. ... [Namely:] [c]ordillera....

--Jerzyt 17:51, 21 June 2007 (UTC)


@Wbm1058: I removed the hatnote you added about massif because, according to the guidance at {{distinguish}}, it's used for words that might be confused for one another without regard to the meanings of the words (such as adobe and abode). In that sense, massif would never be confused with mountain range. — Gorthian (talk) 19:36, 8 March 2016 (UTC)

OK, moving the link to the "see also" section is fine. Now I see there is also an article on Mountain chain. Some discussion somewhere of the distinction between massifmountain chainmountain range would be helpful. My sense is that the distinction between these somewhat subjective terms is subject to differing interpretations. I just thought a hatnote was a nicer way of pointing this out than defacing the top of the article with a {{merge}} tag ;) Not sure these are flat-out content forks, but their relationship to each other should be made clear in the text of each article. – wbm1058 (talk) 20:10, 8 March 2016 (UTC)
The mountain chain lead does a good job of this: "contiguous ridge of mountains within a larger mountain range."
Listing massif in the "see also" section is better than nothing, but it should be mentioned in the article body somewhere. wbm1058 (talk) 20:16, 8 March 2016 (UTC)
I think of a massif as a "chunk" of the earth's crust that has been moved all at once, all in one piece. A mountain range is high, peaked terrain that is geographically related but not necessarily all formed the same way or at the same time. A massif can be part of a mountain range, or even large enough to be called a mountain range, but a mountain range can encompass massifs as well as other types of high crustal deformations. If that's too vague, you might take your question to WikiProject Geology or WikiProject Mountains.— Gorthian (talk) 02:13, 9 March 2016 (UTC)
No, that's not vague, it's the kind of explanation I like. I see that massif seems to relate to mountain formation, i.e. formation by moving a chunk of the Earth's crust, but again the word "massif" isn't found at all in the mountain formation article. So, again these articles need to be better tied together with explanations of how each relates to the others. wbm1058 (talk) 17:41, 9 March 2016 (UTC)

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