The Canadian Shield

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The Canadian Shield North America may be divided into four physical divisions
  • (1) the Canadian Shield,
  • (2) the Appalachians,
  • (3) the Western Cordilleras or Rocky Mountain System and
  • (4) the Central Plains.

    Canadian shield
    The Canadian Shield

  • (1) The Canadian Shield, which may be regarded as the core of North America, extends in the shape of a huge round Hudson Bay, stretching to the south of Lake Superior, and sending an arm westward almost to the Mackenzie River. Slow subsidence and erosion have reduced it to a peneplain, which, however, rises in the Labrador highlands to some 3,000 feet. Its ancient, hard crystalline rocks are rich in minerals, notably nickel, copper, and gold. The rugged undulating Shield differs little in elevation from the adjacent portions to the Central Plains, but it forms a distinct region, owing to its structure and resultant human activities.

    The Hudson Bay lowland is a sedimentary region along the southern margin of the bay. This lowland is a forested plain with little variation in elevation.

    The Canadian Shield encircles Hudson Bay extending southward to the United States. Continental glaciation has produced a relatively smooth surface. Swamp lands are characteristic in many parts of the shield. This has provided a wealth of furs, timber and minerals.

    Next: The Appalachians

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