Warmup: Use the worksheet to complete the task. Discuss and answer the following questions: write down your responses. What created many of the physical landforms in New York State? What bodies of water connect New Yorkers with each others and other Americans?
To understand and to appreciate the geography of New York State, you first must know something about the physical landscape. The location of our lakes, rivers, mountains, and coastal lowlands has determined the pattern of settlement in the state, as well as history and cultural development.
Sandstone is a sedimentary rock made up mainly of sand-size (1/16 to 2 millimeter in diameter) debris made from the breakdown of larger rocks. Environments where you can find large amounts of this debris include beaches, deserts, flood plains and deltas.
Limestone is a sedimentary rock made up of the mineral “calcite.” It most commonly forms in clear, warm, shallow waters. It is usually an organic sedimentary rock that forms from the combination of shell, coral, algal and other debris.
It can also be formed by the precipitation, such as rain, sleet, or hail, hitting calcium carbonate from lake or ocean water.
Up until 8000 years ago, the Ice Age covered New York with glaciers about one to two miles thick across almost all of the state.
B-1There are several places, however, that show a different geologic past. Most of New York City and the Hudson Highlands, for example, have exposures of igneous and metamorphic rocks. This tells us that these parts of the state had a violent history of volcanism and colliding tectonic plates.
The soil on the island of Manhattan is perfect for building skyscrapers. In midtown Manhattan, BEDROCK is only about 10 feet or 3 meters deep.
However, at the location of the Twin Towers in the lower part of Manhattan BEDROCK is about 100 ft or 30 meters deep.
The highland regions stand out very clearly. What color are they?
There are three different mountainous regions:
The Adirondacks (in Northeast New York)
The Allegheny Plateau/ Catskills (along the southern border with Pennsylvania),
The Taconic Mountains/ Hudson Highlands (along the border with New England).
However, these barriers of mountains are breached by some very important lowlands, that form a giant sideways “T”. What color are they on the map?
Where do most New Yorkers live? How do you know this?
What is the land around us like?