Matterhorn
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  • 1. Matterhorn By: Joe Chandler
  • 2. About My Mountain is the Matterhorn. It is located in the Alps in Europe near the border of Switzerland and Italy. The summit is 14,690 feet high. It is unique as it has four steep faces, giving it a pyramid type look. Also all four faces point in the cardinal directions. The name Matterhorn comes from the German words "matter" or meadow and "horn" or peak.
  • 3. Use The main “use” of the Matterhorn is for recreational purposes. It is climbed regularly. Because of its shape some routes are not too difficult and the summit can be reached on an average of 5hrs (record climbing speed is 1hr 56min round trip). Other routes are very challenging and can take on average up to 16hrs to climb for an experienced climber.
  • 4. Formation The Matterhorn is a fold mountain. This means that two continental plates collide and fold up because they are the same density, so subduction can’t happen. In the case of the Matterhorn, and all of the other mountains in the Alps, the Eurasian plate is hitting the African plate. The stress put on both plates causes them to fold, making the mountains. The Matterhorn is still growing.
  • 5. Erosion It used to be just a rounded mountain, but it has eroded a lot over the years. This is mainly because its height is above the snowline, so there is almost always ice on the sides of it. In the warmest months of the year however this ice can melt. The water seeps into cracks on the side of the mountain and then in the colder parts of the year the water freezes. This can easily fracture the rock off the faces. This also makes some rocks loose but not yet fractured, making certain parts of the mountain difficult for climbers. Rock slides and avalanches are also common on the Matterhorn.
  • 6. Future Prediction My future prediction is that over millions of yearsthe Matterhorn will lose its distinct shape. While it isgrowing at a faster rate than it is eroding, the erosionay still affect the shape. I think that over time the ridgesmay erode along with the sides, making it lose itspyramid type shape.
  • 7. The End