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The Western Mountain Ranges region (Fig. 3, Table 2, Heath, this volume) owing to its areal extent (more than 1.5 million km2) and large range in altitude (5,000 m) and latitude (35° to 62° N), includes perhaps the greatest diversity of geologic conditions and processes of all the regions of North America. Consequently, ground-water conditions also are highly varied.

The region includes 15 subregions. Of the subregions, 12 are mountainous subregions and 3 are intermontane and lowland subregions. Included with the mountainous subregions are intermountain basins in Montana and Colorado and individual coastal lowlands along the entire...

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