The Matterhorn in Switzerland rises to an elevation of 14692 ft (4478 m) and is pieced together by the subducted and thus today disappeared Piemont ocean at its base and a continental nappe that was formerly located in Africa that builds up the horn. In contrast, the neighboring Monte Rosa mountains to the left are of European origin making the Matterhorn the contact zone between Africa and Europe with its underlying ocean remnants. 150 million years ago during the Jurassic age both continents were separated by the Tethys ocean. Its European part was the Piemont ocean resembling the area of today's Mediterranean Sea. Parts of this ancient ocean high up in the Alpine mountains are today covered by glaciers. The scenery is additionally covered by 1.3 ft (40 cm) of summer snow from a Mediterranean storm system that wrapped these mountains in clouds for days. After the storm cleared, low clouds still fill the valleys below while the peaks already bask in early sunlight.
August 2007
Canon 20D, Canon EF-S 10-22mm, f/22, 1/60sec, ISO 100, tripod