Standing atop Erratic Rock southwest of McMinnville, Oregon near Highway 18, a 90 ton metamorphic rock comprised of argillite that was transported down from an unknown location in either Montana or Canada as it sat atop an iceberg during the glacial Lake Missoula Flood of the Pleistocene era (13,000-15,000 years ago). This flood caused water to travel at 60mph, ripping about 200 feet off the surrounding topsoil of the hillsides here. Silt & other debris carried down by the flood settled in the valley, including this rock atop the small hill (another more famous erratic includes the Willamette Meteorite), the added soil & nutrients making the Willamette Valley a fertile area for vineyards & wineries today. The Erratic Rock used to weigh 160 tons but has lost 70 tons due to removal of pieces as souveniers from past visitors.
The United States is one of the most diverse countries on earth, jam packed full of amazing sights from St. Patrick's cathedral in New York to Mount Hollywood California.The Northeast region is where it all started. Thirteen British colonies fought the American Revolution from here and won their independence in the first successful colonial rebellion in history. Take a look at these rolling hills carpeted with foliage along the Hudson river here, north of New York City.The American south is known for its polite people and slow pace of life. Probably they move slowly because it's so hot. Southerners tend not to trust people from "up north" because they talk too fast. Here's a cemetery in Georgia where you can find graves of soldiers from the Civil War.The West Coast is sort of like another country that exists to make the east coast jealous. California is full of nothing but grizzly old miners digging for gold, a few gangster rappers, and then actors. That is to say, the West Coast functions as the imagination of the US, like a weird little brother who teases everybody then gets famous for making freaky art.The central part of the country is flat farmland all the way over to the Rocky Mountains. Up in the northwest corner you can find creative people in places like Portland and Seattle, along with awesome snowboarding and good beer. Text by Steve Smith.