Steven Dutch, Professor Emeritus, Natural and Applied Sciences, University of Wisconsin - Green Bay
Location: 38o 43' 34" N, 118o 08' 42" W.
The east front of the Sierra Nevada, seen here, is a gigantic fault. The rocks west of the fault have risen and those east have dropped by at least 6 kilometers. The mountains rise abruptly above the alluvial fans at their base. In 1872 a great earthquake struck this area, but because of the sparse settlement then (and now) there was little loss of life or damage to property.
The high peak a bit right of center is Mount Williamson, 14,389 feet (4386 m) high, located at 38o 39' 26" N, 118o 18' 47" W. . It is the second highest peak in California after Mount Whitney, which just barely peeps over the foreground peaks on the far left. The peak on the far right is 13,740 feet (4189 meters) high.
The Oriental style buildings in the foreground commemorate a sad episode in American history. During World War II, over 110,000 Japanese-Americans were placed in camps because of concern that some might be working with the Japanese government. The fears were almost entirely unfounded. Manzanar was one of the camps. It is now maintained as a National Historic Site.
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Created 28 July 2009, Last Update 15 January 2020