Columbia Plateau

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Columbia Plateau,

physiographic region of North America, c.100,000 sq mi (259,000 sq km), NW United States, between the Rocky Mts. and the Cascade Range in Washington, Oregon, and Idaho. Most of the plateau is underlaid by deposits, more than 10,000 ft (3,048 m) thick in places, of lava (mainly basalt) interbedded with sedimentary rock; older rocks outcrop in the Blue and Wallowa mts. Young lavas, scattered cinder cones, volcanic ash, and barren landscapes (including Craters of the Moon National MonumentCraters of the Moon National Monument,
53,440 acres (21,636 hectares), S central Idaho; est. 1924. This region, composed of several closely grouped volcanoes, is suggestive of a telescopic view of the moon. Volcanic activity dating back c.
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) are features of the Snake River plain in the south. Older, decayed lavas, much modified by accumulations of loess, occur in the north in the Columbia basin section; coulees (dry river canyons) and scablands (extensively eroded basalt surfaces), both carved by glacial meltwaters, are features of the region. The Columbia Plateau is an important agricultural and grazing area and is a major source of hydroelectric power.

Columbia Plateau


a lava plateau in the North American Cordillera. Located in the northwestern USA, between the Cascades to the west and the Rockies to the east. Area, approximately 500,000 sq km; elevation, 700–1,000 m.

The foundation is composed of Paleozoic and Mesozoic crystalline and sedimentary rock, covered on the surface with Miocene and Pliocene basalt; the plateau’s surface is flat or undulating and covered with loess; in the north it is morainic and dissected by the canyons of the Columbia, Snake, and other rivers with depths to 900 m (on the Columbia River) and 1,500 m (on the Snake River). There are also dry canyons, formed in Anthropogenic times (the largest is the Grand Coulee). The rivers have many waterfalls and rapids, and hydroelectric power plants have been constructed. Most of the plateau is covered with turf and grass steppes, now tilled. Wheat is the main crop.

References in periodicals archive ?
This roach spreader is shaped in an early to mid twentieth century style popular among western Montana people, and dancers from the Columbia River Plateau.
Nisbet, a specialist on Thompson, has written a biography of the explorer and mapmaker that focuses on the five years he spent recording the lands and rivers of the Columbia River Plateau in the late 18th century.
Some of that probably would come from wind farms on the Columbia River plateau, said Scott Spettel, EWEB's power management and planning manager.
The Native people of the Columbia River Plateau region are proud of their horse culture and at traditional celebrations in the summer, a horse parade is still very common.
Woven basket hats, made by the twining process of bear grass (Xenophylum tenax) and Indian hemp (Apocynum cannabium), have long been a mark of ethnicity of women from the Columbia River Plateau.
Among the skilled weavers of the Columbia River Plateau region, the women of the Yakama, Warm Springs, Nez Perce, Umatilla, Spokane, Colville and Coeur d'Alene would make a number of utilitarian and decorative items made of twined fiber.
Among the tribes of the Columbia River Plateau is a very popular contest called "Horsetail dance".
It was the word used by the early French trappers and explorers to describe Native hair styles of particular Native people they encountered such as the pompadour worn by some people of the Columbia River Plateau as well as the shaved "Mohawk" hair style that was popular with Eastern Woodland Native people as well as those who wore a porcupine headdress.
Along with presenting the basic craft steps, I add two or three cultural observations about bells, which are particular to the people of the Columbia River Plateau.
These bags were, however, a Columbia River Plateau fashion accessory, some might even say a fashion necessity.
The area where Round Bustle originated (the Columbia River Plateau area of Oregon Washington and Idaho) is close, relatively speaking, to where Chicken Dance originated (the Western plains of Montana and Alberta).

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