STS058-082-060 Mount Whitney and Sierra Nevada Mountains, California, U.S.A. October 1993
Mount Whitney [(14 491 feet) (4417 meters)], part of the snowcapped Sierra Nevada Mountains, is the highest peak in the contiguous 48 states. The sharp crest lines of the granite rocks are vivid evidence that these mountains were carved by past ice age glaciers. The north-south-aligned, U-shaped Kern River Valley, easily recognizable by the deep shadows cast on the valley walls, is actually a fault where glaciation further modified and produced a valley. The headwaters of Kings River Canyon, an east-west feature, lies north of the source for the Kern River.
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