Encyclopedia Article


An exposed upthrust of rock that appears to break through the earth's surface. These rocky protrusions are produced in areas with extreme or persistent erosion, where soil and vegetation are removed, or never even get the chance to accumulate due to wind, water, waves, fire events, volcanic eruptions, mechanical disturbance, and even shifting tectonic plates. Rock outcrops are often found in mountainous areas or near canyons or ravines and can emerge as the result of the removal of large amounts of earth associated with mining or large scale construction activities.

Photo Credit: 

"Outcropping panorama north of Buena Vista, CO, July 29, 2006" by Scott Ingram is licensed under CC BY-NC.

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