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mesa




Canyon and mesas in Mesa Verde National Park
Mesa Verde National Park. View looking down a V-shaped erosional canyon between mesa. Sandstone forms the canyon rim and the cap rock of the mesa. Credit: USGS
A flat-topped, steep-sided, table-like mountain (mesa is Spanish for "table") capped with a formation or stratum, which is relatively horizontal and resistant to erosion. When such a topographic feature is less than one square mile (2.6 square kilometers) in area it is usually called a butte.


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   • GEOGRAPHY
   • GEOLOGY AND PLANETARY SCIENCE