Western Cordillera: Ski Resort

The Western Cordillera region, located on the west coast of Canada, is one of the most popular destinations for skiers around the world. It offers large, steep mountains and plenty of snow, making it the perfect place to setup some sort of a  skiing business or a ski resort.

Climate

The Western Cordillera sits right by the pacific ocean. This puts a moderating effect on its climate, since the ocean stays warmer during the winter and slightly cooler during the summer, meaning that this region never gets too warm or too cold. In short, the Western Cordillera has a maritime climate. However all the mountain ranges, where ski resorts are usually built, are much colder due to elevation. This is because as you go higher up in altitude, the air gets thinner, and so the temperature is much colder. Also, being near an ocean means the mountain ranges continuously get an on-shore breeze. This creates a lot of relief precipitation on the windward side of the mountains in this land form region, meaning more snow, a longer skiing season, and a successful business.

Natural Landscape

The Western Cordillera is generally a very rocky and high landform region. Its contains many mountain ranges, the most popular one being the Rockies. These  large ranges were made from the collision of the North American tectonic plate and the Pacific tectonic plate. This is also known as a convergent boundary. Since the Pacific plate is much larger and thicker, it pushed the North American plate upwards and ended up creating several mountain ranges in the Western Cordillera. Then, the natural landscape in this landform region was effected again by an alpine glacier during the last ice age. The alpine glacier moved down mountains, under the force of gravity and made the mountains a little bit more sharper and steeper. Also, this glacier left behind other erosional features such as fjords and u-shaped valleys. In conclusion, the Western Cordillera has a very rocky landscape that has been created by a convergent boundary and an alpine glacier.

Vegetation and Soil

The soil in the Western Cordillera is unable to grow crops due to climate. Since this landform region has a maritime climate and receives plenty of precipitation throughout the year, it's soil goes through the process of leaching, meaning all the nutrients in the soil do not go up to the plants but instead they get transported from the A horizon of the soil to the B horizon. In turn, the crops do not get enough minerals and have trouble growing. However, the Western Cordillera is home to various species of huge trees, such as the Douglas fir, and other plant life. This is because the windward sides of the mountain ranges in the Western Cordillera get a lot of rain and a good climate for plant life. The leeward sides of the mountains, however, have a rain shadow and lack enough precipitation to host a good environment for plants to grow, thus the leeward sides only grow desert plants such as cacti. In all, due to climate in the Western Cordillera, the soil is not very fertile but this landform region has the ability to grow a lot of plant life.

Geology of Region (Rock Types)

The Western Cordillera region is composed of all three types of rocks; metamorphic, sedimentary, and igneous. This is because the Western Cordillera has three large mountain ranges,the Eastern Mountains, Interior Plateaus, and the Coast Mountains, which were all created very differently from one another. Firstly, the Eastern Mountains are made up of two slightly smaller mountain ranges, the infamous Rockies and the Columbian Mountains, which were both created by two plates colliding and folding. Both of these two smaller ranges consist of mostly sedimentary rock. Furthermore, the Interior Plateaus mountain range was created by a lot of volcanic activity. As a result, this range contains a lot of igneous rock and metamorphic rock. The last mountain range, the Coast Mountains, was created from the convergent boundary between the Pacific plate and North American plate, meaning that this range also experiences a lot of volcanic activity and is formed of mainly igneous and metamorphic rock. To conclude, the Western Cordillera is made up of all three types of rock, heavily due to the tectonic plates colliding underneath it.

Why Western Cordillera is Perfect

The Western Cordillera is the best destination for anyone who is looking to establish a ski resort or any other ski-related business. It provides huge, steep mountains full to the brim with snow for it's skiers and it is a world-wide popular spot for skiing. Moreover, the Western Cordillera has a maritime climate so it receives more precipitation in the winter compared to the summer months, meaning plenty of snow on your resort and also longer skiing seasons that extend into much of spring. Also, since the Western Cordillera is home to many different species of tree's, forestry is a big business and wood is cheap, meaning the initial building of your resort could cost you very,very less compared to other places. You should definitely consider starting your business here while the opportunity lasts!

Just some skiing footage from the Western Cordillera, featuring the high, rocky landscape and abundance of snow.

Climate Change

Unfortunately, climate change will have many negative effects on the sustainability of your business. If you are to build a skiing resort, you will rely heavily on low temperatures to have plenty of snow and a longer skiing season in spring. However, climate change will ensure a global rise in temperatures because the gases within the earth's atmosphere are trapping too much heat. These gases will increase within our atmosphere in the future because industrial factories will continue to let out carbon dioxide and other industrial gases into our environment. This is known as the greenhouse effect, which is essential to life on earth but an enhanced greenhouse effect can prove to be deadly. This means a lot of the times, you will not have long skiing seasons and you will be unable to generate enough money to keep your business growing. In fact, during the past one hundred years, ski resorts have experienced an increase of 1.6 degrees Celsius. Also, major ski resorts built in places like Whistler, British Columbia have experienced a lower snow peak in the past few years and many ski resorts within the Western Cordillera have seen their spring skiing season take a dive from six weeks to four weeks. In conclusion, if you are looking to settle a long-term, sustainable ski resort that will last for many generations, climate change will prove to be lethal to the overall performance of your business.

Risk of Natural Disasters

The Western Cordillera is located directly on top of a convergent boundary, which is definitely the most dangerous type of tectonic plate boundary to live on. A convergent boundary consists of two different plates constantly pushing against each other, which in this case are the Pacific plate and the North American plate. Due to this, convergent plate boundaries cause many, many earthquakes because of the way they are always pushing and shaking the surface of the earth. For example, during the past thirty days, almost all of the earthquakes within Canada have been in the Western Cordillera region. Also, since the Western Cordillera sits on the coast of Canada, the convergent boundary could cause a violent earthquake within the pacific ocean, which would unleash a devastating tsunami upon this landform region. Furthermore the two tectonic plates, pushing against each other create bumps and cracks on the earth's surface. This causes volcanic activity and could possibly result in a large volcanic eruption destroying a lot of the Western Cordillera. Also, the global rise in temperatures due to climate change could cause the ocean levels to rise, meaning the Western Cordillera would be at a high risk of getting flooded. In conclusion, due to the fact that the Western Cordillera is on a convergent boundary, it is in risk of several different natural disasters.

Conclusion

In conclusion, I think you should definitely at least consider setting up a ski resort in the Western Cordillera. It is a landform region that provides the perfect climate and landscape for skiing. Even though it will go through negative impacts due to climate change and it is in the risk of a natural disaster, the positives of the Western Cordillera definitely out-weigh the negatives.

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