Natural Wisdom: What is the Difference Between a Fjord and a Sound?

The name Fjord will, for many people, conjure up mental images of Norway. One of the world’s most famous Fjord’s, however, is known by a different terminology: Milford Sound (pictured below).

Milford Sound Edited

 

This made us curious (like other similar nomenclature debates such as river, creek, stream, etc…) as to what, if any, the distinction was.

Technically different things, a fjord is probably best visualized as a type of sound. If we take a Sound to mean a large ocean inlet, a Fjord is specifically one that has been carved out by a glacier meeting the coast before receding or flooded by the ocean.

There is another similar geographical feature found half way around the world. The Musandam Peninsula in Oman looks very much like fjords and shares many of the same characteristics:

Cliffs in Musandam Peninsula
By StellarD (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)%5D, via Wikimedia Commons
The difference here is, this is the result of tectonic plates pushing into and under each other. This produces mountains in a traditional sense but as they begin to sink the sea water rises to create this Fjord-esque landscape.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s