Unsourced material may be challenged and removed. The eastern and southern coastal regions are drained by numerous geography of east africa pdf rivers. In South Africa the plateau is at its highest in the east where its edge varies in altitude between 2,000 m and 3,300 m.
From the coastal plain the escarpment does, however, look like a range of mountains, hence the names. Here the Escarpment is capped by a 1400 m layer of erosion-resistant lava, which once covered most of Southern Africa 182 million years ago. Southern Africa when it was still part of Gondwana. Only a small patch of this lava remains and covers much of Lesotho. This gives this high region its very rugged, mountainous appearance. Diagrammatic and only roughly to scale. The colour code for the geological layers is the same as those used in the diagram on the left.
The Swartberg Mountain range owes some of its great height to upliftment along this fault line. The subsurface structures are not to scale. Important geographical regions in South Africa. None of the regions indicated on the map have sharp well-defined borders, except where the Escarpment, or a range of mountains forms a clear dividing line between two regions. The rivers which drain the plateau therefore run west, ultimately, via the Orange River, into the Atlantic Ocean. The coastal plain, which varies in width from about 60 km in the north-west to over 250 km in the north-east, generally slopes gently downwards from the foot of the escarpment to the coast.
In the west there are very few such rivers because of the aridity of the region. Folded rock formations of the Swartberg. In the south and south-west the coastal plain contains a series of mountain ranges that run parallel to the coastline. 350 million years ago, and were then crumpled into a series of parallel folds by the collision of the Falkland Plateau into the south of what was to become Africa when it was part of Gondwana.