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Series: Physiographic Provinces
Coastal Plain Province
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The Coastal Plain province, the flattest province, stretches over 3,540 km (2,200 mi) from Cape Cod to the Mexican border. The plain slopes gently seaward from the inland highlands in a series of terraces. This gentle slope continues far into the Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico, forming the continental shelf.
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utm_source=person&utm_medium=website&utm_c Wilbur Wright
This region was formed during the breakup of the supercontinent Pangea in the early Mesozoic Era.
From about 280-230 million years ago, (Late Paleozoic Era until the Late Triassic) the continent we
now know as North America was connected with Africa, South America, and Europe.
John Gross Barnard
As Pangea broke apart, rifting began as magma welled up through the weakness in the crust and created a volcanic rift zone. The rift between the spreading continents gradually grew to form a new
ocean basin, the Atlantic. The rift zone known as the Mid-Atlantic Ridge continues to provide the raw volcanic materials for the still expanding ocean basin. As the edge of North America moved away from the hot rift zone, it began to cool and subside beneath the new Atlantic Ocean. This once-active divergent plate boundary became the passive, trailing edge of westward moving North America. In
General Oliver Otis Howard
plate tectonic terms, the Coastal Plain is a classic example of a passive continental margin.
The Coastal Plain is divided into six sections:
East Gulf Coastal Plain (Map
Embayed section (Map (http://www.nps.gov/common/uploads/photogallery/nri/park/geology/4923233B-1DD8B71B-0B1B978BB20ACFFE/4923233B-1DD8-B71B-0B1B978BB20ACFFE-large.jpg)) Floridian section (Map (http://www.nps.gov/common/uploads/photogallery/nri/park/geology/492853C7-1DD8B71B-0BD2AAFA72AB380E/492853C7-1DD8-B71B-0BD2AAFA72AB380E-large.jpg)) Mississippi Alluvial Plain (Map (http://www.nps.gov/common/uploads/photogallery/nri/park/geology/4931654B-1DD8B71B-0B12445AEA1D1F68/4931654B-1DD8-B71B-0B12445AEA1D1F68-large.jpg)) Sea Island section (Map (http://www.nps.gov/common/uploads/photogallery/nri/park/geology/4953BDAD-1DD8B71B-0B86D3AC84F0286B/4953BDAD-1DD8-B71B-0B86D3AC84F0286B-large.jpg)) West Gulf Coastal Plain (Map (http://www.nps.gov/common/uploads/photogallery/nri/park/geology/4965FC4F-1DD8B71B-0B616E32BE06AA96/4965FC4F-1DD8-B71B-0B616E32BE06AA96-large.jpg)) Return (http://www.nps.gov/subjects/geology/physiographic-provinces.htm) to Physiographic Provinces
American Alligator in Everglades National Park NPS photo/Rodney Cammauf
Coastal Plains Parks Related Links NPS—Geoscience Concepts (http://www.nps.gov/subjects/geology/geologyconcepts.htm) NPS—Geologic Tour (http://www.nps.gov/subjects/geology/geologic-tour.htm) NPS—Geodiversity Atlas (http://www.nps.gov/articles/series.htm?id=E6B9E368-1DD8B71B-0B63AA49B7091501) NPS—Geology (http://www.nps.gov/subjects/geology/index.htm)
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