Currently I am working on a world that has a continent which is nearly the size of Australia. So I wanted to know where in this world can mountain ranges and mountain occur and how frequently?

  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Usually at plate boundaries: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Plate_tectonics and learner.org/interactives/dynamicearth/plate.html also geology.com/plate-tectonics.shtml $\endgroup$
    – nzaman
    Sep 6, 2017 at 16:50
  • $\begingroup$ Related: worldbuilding.stackexchange.com/questions/581/… You can learn much from this :) $\endgroup$
    – Vylix
    Sep 6, 2017 at 17:00
  • $\begingroup$ If you don't worry about the science behind the mountains, you can put them wherever it makes sense for your story. If you want a quick-start, get a map of the Earth that shows mountains and copy-and-paste ranges that look cool and put them where you want. $\endgroup$
    – JBH
    Sep 6, 2017 at 18:41
  • $\begingroup$ @nzaman: But then there are the Rocky Mountains (and all the ranges west to the Sierra Nevada) which AFAIK are not on a plate boundary. $\endgroup$
    – jamesqf
    Sep 7, 2017 at 4:28
  • $\begingroup$ @jamesqf: Hence, usually, instead of always. The only certain criterion that I know of is plate boundaries, the rest occur due to local effects. PS the Rockies and Andes are part of the same plate boundary. The Appalachian, Ural and Carpathians are the weird ones. $\endgroup$
    – nzaman
    Sep 7, 2017 at 11:43

1 Answer 1


Mountains form from the collision of tectonic plates or hotspots in the mantle causing an upwelling of the rock.

In short the surface features don't matter, whether the surface is above the water or not isn't important (mountain ranges form beneath the sea, too) it only matters how you have divided your planet up into tectonic plates (or indeed if you have given it tectonic plates).


Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .