A rain shadow is a patch of land that has been forced to become a desert because mountain ranges blocked all plant-growing, rainy weather. On one side of the mountain, wet weather systems drop rain and snow. On the other side of the mountain—the rain shadow side—all that precipitation is blocked.
What is the rain shadow effect and how does it work?
The windward side of a mountain range is moist and lush because of this precipitation. Once the air passes over the mountain range, it moves down the other side, warms, and dries out. This dry air produces a rain shadow.
How are rain shadows made?
Rain shadow deserts are created when mountain ranges lie parallel to moist, coastal areas. Prevailing winds moving inland cool as air is forced to rise over the mountains. Carried moisture falls on slopes facing the winds. When the winds move over the crest and down the far side, they are very dry.
Which is an example of the rain shadow effect in South Asia?
Examples of Rain Shadow Areas
In Asia, the Himalaya mountain range acts as the catalyst for the rain shadow effect over the Tibetan Plateau, Central Asia, and the Gobi Desert. The Japanese Alps create that same phenomenon over the Kanto Plain in the Tokyo region.
How does rain shadow effect Washington?
The rain shadow effect is a phenomenon caused by the forced lifting of air over a topographic barrier, such as the Cascade Mountains. … In Washington, storms usually move in off the Pacific Ocean and travel over Seattle and the rest of the Puget Sound before slamming into the western slopes of the Cascades.
Why the rain shadow areas are generally dry?
As the air rises up over a mountain range, the air cools, water vapor condenses, and clouds form. Land in a rain shadow is typically very dry and receives much less precipitation and cloud cover than land on the windward side of the mountain range. …
What is the biggest rain shadow?
In the South Island of New Zealand is to be found one of the most remarkable rain shadows anywhere on Earth. The Southern Alps intercept moisture coming off the Tasman Sea, precipitating about 6,300 mm (250 in) to 8,900 mm (350 in) liquid water equivalent per year and creating large glaciers on the western side.
Do all mountains cause rain shadows?
A number of factors including prevailing winds, topographic features and local weather patterns contribute to the formation of rain shadows, or dry regions on the protected side of some mountain ranges.
Why does rain only fall on one side of the mountain?
Precipitation is moisture falling to the ground in the form of rain, snow or ice. Mountains have two major effects called the orographic effect, which causes clouds and precipitation to form on one side of the mountain, and the rain shadow effect, which is a drier area on the opposite side of the mountain.
What is an example of rain shadow effect?
A rain shadow is a dry area on one side of a mountain or mountain range. … Examples of rain shadows include the east side of the Rocky Mountains in the United States, the Atacama Desert in Chile (caused by the Andes), and the Gobi desert in Mongolia (caused by the Himalayas).
What are the 3 largest population clusters in the world?
- East Asia (approx. 1.7 billion people or 28% of the world’s population)
- South Asia (approx. 1.4 billion, 23 % )
- Europe (approx. 700 million 12%)
Which side of the mountain receives the most precipitation?
The leeward side receives more precipitation than the windward side.
Is Quilcene in the rain shadow?
Rainfall Averages in Sequim Washington and the Nearby Pacific Northwest. These Pacific Northwest towns are not in the rainshadow: … Quilcene WA: 54 inches. Bremerton WA: 56 inches.
Is Camano Island in the rain shadow?
However, the air flows downward over the mountain range and as the air warms, residual moisture in the air evaporates. The area where this dry air lands is the Olympic Rain Shadow. … The rainfall in this area is represented in yellow and the shape of Camano Island is curved like a banana!
Where are the rain shadows in Washington state?
The Olympic Rain Shadow is a small region northwest of the city of Seattle which experiences significantly dryer and brighter weather than surrounding locations. The rain shadow encompasses the towns of Sequim, Port Angeles, Port Townsend, Coupeville, and Victoria BC, as well as much of the San Juan Islands.