[Answered] Briefly mention the alignment of major mountain ranges of the world and explain their impact on local weather conditions, with examples.

A mountain range is a sequential chain of mountains or hills with similarity in alignment. The major mountain ranges of the World include, the Himalayas, The Alps mountain range,The Atlas mountain range,the Andes mountain range and the Rocky mountain ranges.  

The alignment of these ranges and their impact on local weather condition can be seen as:  

A. The Himalayas:   

  1. Himalayas extend for a 2500 km from west to east, in an arc shaped manner.  
  2. They protect the Indian subcontinent from the frigid, dry winds blowing from the Tibetan plateau. 
  3. It acts as barrier for monsoon winds, causing rainfall in India, it also is responsible for the for the Taklamakan and Gobi Desert as they fall in the rain shadow area. 

B. The Alps:  

  1. It is the highest mountain range system of Europe, stretching for 1200 km, west to east, across 8 alpine countries, such as: France, Switzerland, Italy etc.  
  2. It influences precipitation patterns, in South Europe and Eurasia. 
  3. Alps influence presence and direction of local winds like, Foehn, Mistral etc. 

C. The Atlas:  

  1. The Atlas Mountain range stretches through Morocco, Algeria and Tunisia in a South West to North East direction. 
  2. It separates the Mediterranean region from the Sahara Desert. 
  3. It causes high rainfall in the region between them and the Mediterranean Sea by capturing the moisture laden winds 
  4. They also act as a rain shadow, preventing the rainfall in the desert region of Sahara. 

D. The Andes:  

  1. They are the longest continental mountain ranges in the world.   
  2. They extend from North to South through seven South American countries. 
  3. The north, east and the South West part of the Andes is rainy and moist. 
  4. Andes acts as the rain shadow for the Atacama Desert. 

E. The Rockies: 

  1. Rockies extend from the northernmost part of British Columbia to New Mexico in Southwestern United States. 
  2. The size and locale play important part in formation of warm snow-eater Chinhook winds. 
  3. Rockies capture the moisture laden winds from the Pacific and cause ample rainfall in its windward side, while giving a rain-shadow effect to the deserts in Southwest North America.  

Mountain ranges play an important role in influencing the local weather patterns and lifestyles of the people. For this reason, they are important for not only the geography but also the various cultural and economic factors. 


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