DO You Know?

26 December, 2019 12:00 AM printer

•    The Alps are the highest and most extensive mountain range system that lies entirely in Europe, stretching approximately 1,200 kilometers (750 miles) across eight Alpine countries: Austria, France, Germany, Italy, Liechtenstein, Monaco, Slovenia, and Switzerland.

•    The Alps were formed about 65 million years ago. The mountains were formed as the African and Eurasian tectonic plates collided.

•    The Alps are generally divided into Western Alps and Eastern Alps, cut along a line between Lake Constance and Lake Como, following the Rhine valley.

•    The Western Alps are higher, but their central chain is shorter and much curved; they are located in France, Italy and Switzerland.

•    Mont Blanc, at 4,809 meters (15,777 feet), is the highest peak in the Alps.

•    The Alpine region area contains about a hundred peaks higher than 4,000 meters (13,123 ft), known as the “four-thousanders“.

•    The mean height of the mountain peaks is 2.5 kilometers (1.6 miles). The Alps are more than 200 kilometers (125 miles) wide at their broadest point between Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany, and Verona, Italy.

•    The Alps maintain a permanent snow blanket over 2750 meters (9,000 feet) above sea level, and have many glaciers.

•    The 1,817 square kilometers (702 square miles) of the Alps covered by glaciers in 1876 had shrunk to 1,342 square kilometers (518 square miles) by 1973, resulting in decreased river run-off levels. 40% of the glaciation in Austria has disappeared since 1850, and 30% of that in Switzerland.