Rocks, Minerals, Soils/Natural Resources/Land Features,Regions/Geologic History

Rocks, Minerals, Soils Page (Begins pg. 3 of packet, changes into 4)

Emerald, a common mineral in NC

(pg. 3)Plenty of rocks, minerals, and soils exist in North Carolina.  Plenty of rocks and minerals exist in the western part of North Carolina because of the mountains and mines that are there.  Soil is the most common in the Piedmont region, and also common in the Coastal Plain region.

(pg.3)Some examples of rocks would be anything from actinolite to wollastite.  Over 80 different rocks and minerals have been discovered in the mountain region of N.C. alone.  The most commonly found minerals in North Carolina are feldspar, mica, and pyrophyllite.  Also, the largest emerald crystal ever discovered in North America came from North Carolina.  The emerald is the states official precious stone.  Now for soils, there are a whole lot.  North Carolina has over 300 different types of soils included in its roots.  Alfisols, Entisols, and Histosols are included in some of the most common soils found in the state.

(Beginning of page 4) Many types of rocks/minerals and soils are found today in North Carolina.  Some famous rocks/minerals founded are calcite, feldspar, emerald which is the official precious stone of N.C., and Granite, which is the official state rock.  Also one of the most common soils in North Carolina is the Ultisols of the Upper Coastal Plain.  Calcite is founded all throughout the western part of the Carolinas.  Calcite is a clear, see-through mineral that can come out with a colorless, yellow, green, or white color.  However, its streak is white.  Granite is the state official rock.  Granite is an igneous rock used to help with buildings, and different forms of engineering.  Granite is composed of  Potassium feldspar, plagioclase feldspar, and quartz; differing amounts of muscovite, biotite, and hornblende-type amphiboles.  Ultisols, especially the ultisols found in the upper coastal plain, is the most common type of soil found in North Carolina (estimate based off map in textbook)  Ultisols soil can be very acidic, most, though it is well developed.  It usually has clay as a subsoil.

Granite, is the N.C. official state rock.

The 4 most commonly found rocks/minerals/soils found in NC are

Feldspar is one of N.C.s most producive

  • Feldspar, which is one of the three most common minerals
  • Ultisols is the most common, though it is found more in the Upper Coastal Plain then anywhere else.
  • Granite, one of the most common rocks, and it is the state official rock
  • Mica, because it is also one of the most common minerals in North Carolina

Natural Resources Page (Begins with pg.3 in packet, the picture, then changes into 5)
Pictured here is Nantahala National Forest is located in the Southwest corner of North Carolina.  It contains 531,341 acres.
(Beginning of pg.5) North Carolina is home to quite a bit of natural resources.  Over 1,2 million acres of the state are National Forest areas.  Because of lakes, rivers, and the atlantic, North Carolina for a long time has been a hot spot for fishing.  The Tarheel state also has surface mines for finding all of its minerals like Feldspar, Mica, and so forth.  North Carolina, way back when, was the largest producing tobacco state in the U.S. North Carolina has always been very weel known because of its quantity of tobacco.  North Carolina is rich with Natural Resources.
Four of the most common natural resources found in North Carolina would be:
  • Its 1.2 Million acres of National Forest area is something you just can't top.  It's the biggest resource in North Carolina
  • Pictured here is some good ole'
    North Carolina born clay.
  • You see clay all throughout the Piedmonth and some of Coast Plain region.  It is huge in Norht Carolina
  • Tobacco is a huge resource and was one of the reasons why North Carolina had such a rapid growing economy back in the day.  N.C. is the richest place in the U.S. for tobacco, and it has long been famous for it.
  • Pictured here is Falls Lake, a water
    source and fishing source for
    Wake County.
  • North Carolinas water sources have brought the state many fish and places to drink water, so that it definitely in the top 4 resources in North Carolina.

Land Features/Regions Page (Begins with pg.3 in packet, changes into 6)
North Carolina is home to 3 regions.  The Coastal Plains in the eastern part of the state along the coast of the Atlantic, the Piedmont Region in the center of the State where most farming and where there is usually a hilly terrain, and the Mountain Region in the western part of the state which is where most mining is done and where all of N.C.s famous mountains are.  As you go from east to west, the terrain starts to get bumpier until your at the Appalachin Mountains.  Each is unique in its own way with weather, climate, enviornment all being different than each other.

Pictured here are North Carolinas 3 reigons: The Coast Plain, the Piedmont, and the Montains.
(Beginning of Pg. 6) The Coastal Plain is where all of North Carolinas beaches are, where the weather is the most humid, where it is the windiest in the state.  The Coastal Plain also includes North Carolinas outer islands, or as some would call it, the Outer Coastal Plain, or Tidewater.  The Coast Plain is rich with sedimentary rocks, and also is full of primary sediments such as sand, clay, and also some limestone.  Many of the natural forests regions have been cleared for people to farm.  The Coastal Plain is also the largest region in North Carolina.

The Piedmont is the central portion of North Carolina, with plenty of hilly terrains.  The Piedmont has the greatest variety of rocks of any of the three, and it can range from 90 to 450 meters above sea level.  You are able to find gneisses, granites, and nothing but a load of schist along the western border of the region.  East, you can find loads of igneous rocks, heat deformed volcanic rock, and sedimentary rock.

The Mountain Region of North Carolina is the smallest of the three, though they contain some of the greatest sites in the state.  The Mountains were formed, and because of its level increase to that of the Coastal Plain, erosion began to take over and formed the mountains that we know of today.  Because of sedimentation, the Mountains draw a downward slope to the Coastal Plain.

The four different regions in North Carolina are the
    Header Coast of the Outer Coastal Plains of N.C.
  • Outer Coastal Plain
  • Inner Coastal Plain
  • Piedmont
  • And Mountain Region

    Pictured here is Grandfather
    Mountain, in the Mountain Region.

Geologic History (only on pg.3)
North Carolina's land was formed after an incredibly long process.  The greatest example of this is the Appalachain Mountains.  Processes such as continental collision, Erosion, deposition, and seismic activity formed North Carolina into what it is today.

About 250 million to 300 million years ago, the Appalachin Mountains began to form from Continental Collision with Africa, and then over time the two continents began to split apart.  As this happened, the Atlantic began to form, and this began to form the Coastal Plain.  Erosion also shaped the Piedmont, though its roll was not as big as the Coastal Plain due to the Piedmont having harder rock then the Coastal Plain.  This is just a breif summary of how North Carolina was formed to what it has amounted to today.

The Mountains didn't always used to look like this as many processes have changed it over time.

Sources: - McRocks
When I couldn't find very good information for rocks and minerals, I was able to find McRocks, which was very specfifc about when and where rocks were founded in western North Carolina. - ENR
This was the most helpful with finding the most common minerals in NC.

North Carolina Enviornmental/Earth Science - Prentice Hall
The information on soil was great, though it didn't have too much for rocks and minerals.  It also was a huge help for Natural Resources, Land Features, and Geology.