In my world I have a region of desert, bordered on the east by the steep cliffs of a tableland or plateau. The plateau slopes gradually down to the east coast of the continent, a distance comparable to the width of Europe. The prevailing winds come from the east, off the ocean, and blow across these tablelands, being gradually pushed upward by the rising land.
If they're high enough, could these these tablelands create a rain shadow that would explain the desert? If so, how high off the desert floor would be high enough?