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Andes mountains facts

Andes is the name of the great mountain system that runs down the western coast of South America. It stretches for more than 4,500 miles from Panama in the north to Cape Horn in the south, and is the world's longest mountain chain. Several peaks soar to more than 20,000 feet, and only the Himalayas in Asia are higher than the Andes.

Andes mountains facts - Christ of the Andes Andes mountains facts - map

Andes mountains facts

The famous statue 'Christ of the Andes' stands high in the mountains on the Chile-Argentinean border. It was erected by the two countries to mark the peaceful settlement of a longstanding dispute and their intention never to wage war against each other

Map of the Andes (marked in black). The Andes run for 4,500 miles down the western edge of South America

Parts of the Andes mountains run through Panama, Colombia, Venezuela, Ecuador, Peru, Bolivia, Chile and Argentina. For about half their length, the mountains are more than 12,000 feet high. From the point of view of the Earth's history, they are quite new mountains, but they have been severely affected by weathering. Fast-flowing rivers and enormous glaciers have produced many gorges and valleys. Most of the peaks are volcanic, and some are still active volcanoes.

Andes mountains facts - Andes adventures

Andes mountains facts - Andes adventures

In fact, the northern Andes mountains split into three roughly parallel ranges. The central Andes extend up to 500 miles in width. They form plains that are 12,000 feet high, and some of the highest peaks are found there. Among these are Chimborazo (20,577 ft), Cotopaxi (19,344 ft) and Ojos del Salado (22,590 ft). The southern Andes become lower as they approach Cape Horn, but they also contain Mt. Aconcagua (22,834 ft), the highest mountain in the Americas. The Andes are rich in minerals - copper, silver, and gold being the most important.

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