Page last updated
Georgia's Geology > Physiographic Provinces > Map of Provinces > Georgia's Aquifers
General Interest Site

In the northwest corner of the state is the Ridge and Valley province which is characterized by many long, parallel valleys and ridges that resulted from erosion of folded sedimentary rocks.

The Blue Ridge province is the southwestern end of the Appalachian Mountains, and is underlain by hard crystalline rock. It is an area of forested mountains and valleys, with elevation ranging from less than 1000 ft. to 4784 ft at Brasstown Bald, Georgia's highest point.

The Piedmont province is an area of rolling plains underlain by the same hard crystalline rocks as the Blue Ridge but without the high mountains and steep topography. It comprises nearly one-third of the state. The soils are sandy loam and clay loam and support a variety of agricultural crops, including cotton, corn and peaches.

The Coastal Plain province is the largest, over sixty percent of the state. It is underlain by sand and limestone which, combined with this province's relatively flat topography, produces little runoff of rainwater because most of it readily soaks into the sandy soil.

The Fall Line is the dividing line between the Piedmont and the Coastal Plain. It is the landward boundary of encroachment by the ocean during the Cretaceous period when sea level was much higher than it is today. The Fall Line gets its name from the many waterfalls and rapids that occur along it, created by rivers running from the Piedmont with its relatively hard, erosion-resistant metamorphic rocks into the Coastal Plain with its relatively soft and erodable sedimentary rocks. Rivers above the Fall Line typically have narrow or non-existent floodplains, while rivers below the Fall Line are characterized by wide floodplains, adjacent marshes and meandering streambeds.