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Looking northeast and down on the South Mountain Metamorphic Core Complex from Butterlfy Peak, in the Sierra Estrella.

   The set of rounded dome-shaped mountains in the center of this view is called South Mountain by Phoenicians (actually, its correct name is the South Mountains, but no one here calls it that).  The one on the left is correctly named the Alta Ridge.
   These ridges are the centerpieces of the largest city park in the world, with 40 miles (~65km) of trails.  The highest point bears a forest of TV and radio antennae. 
   Geologists come from far and wide to study them, as they are a classic and easily visible example of a "" -- a geologic structure probably indicating stretching of North America from southwest to northeast during the middle .  You can see this from a different perspective in a view from space.
   This picture is taken from Quartz Peak (elevation 4052 feet, 1235m) -- you can look back from Alta Ridge to where this picture was taken, for the reverse view.  The valley in the foreground is that of the Gila River, flowing from right (southeast) to left (northwest).
   Next View >>

   See the GeoHistory page if you want to know more about why the landscape looks the way it does, or return to the map of "The Rocks of the Valley of the Sun" for more view locations.
   You can also send this as an E-Postcard to your friends!

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