What is the Sierra Nevada?
Known as the Range of Light, the Sierra Nevada is a vast mountain range that lies primarily in California, with the Carson Range spur expanding into Nevada.
The collision of tectonic plates formed the Sierra Nevada around 40-100 million years ago, creating a chain of volcanoes through faulting and subduction. The volcanoes eventually became dormant and shaped the Sierra Nevada range through time.
Today, the towering mountain range runs roughly 400 miles from Tehachapi Pass in the south to the Cascade Range, along the North Fork of the Feather River, spanning 24 counties and containing the headwaters of 24 river basins.
Did you know?
The Sierra is rich in natural resources. It produces 60% of California’s water supply and supplies the state with 50% of its hydroelectric energy. Wildlife is abundant with 3500 plant, 572 animal, and 321 aquatic species.