Caprock Escarpment

Northwest escarpment of the Llano Estacado overlooking Alamogordo Valley of Quay and Guadalupe Counties, New Mexico.

Term used in West Texas and Eastern New Mexico to describe the geographical transition point between the level High Plains of the Llano Estacado and the surrounding rolling terrain.

- Caprock Escarpment

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Llano Estacado

Region in the Southwestern United States that encompasses parts of eastern New Mexico and northwestern Texas.

The northern edge of the Llano Estacado in New Mexico
Caprock Escarpment south of Ralls, Texas
Agricultural land and canyons on the eastern side of the Llano Estacado
Wind turbines
Map of Texas counties with population density
Lubbock, Texas, the largest city on the Llano
A shot of downtown Amarillo, Texas
Midland, "The Tall City" of West Texas
Downtown Odessa

To the east, the Caprock Escarpment, a precipitous cliff about 300 ft high, lies between the Llano and the red Permian plains of Texas; while to the west, the Mescalero Escarpment demarcates the eastern edge of the Pecos River valley.

Eastern New Mexico

Physiographic subregion within the U.S. state of New Mexico.

West of Hobbs, Lea County, New Mexico.
Gate leading to fenced pastureland in the wide open spaces south of Kenna, Roosevelt County, New Mexico.
Abandoned post office in Bellview, Curry County, New Mexico.

Portions of Eastern New Mexico's elevation extends to over 4000 ft. The region is characterized by flat, largely-featureless terrain with the exception of the Pecos River valley and the abrupt breaks along the Mescalero Ridge and northern caprock escarpments of the Llano Estacado.

Palo Duro Canyon

Palo Duro Canyon Geologic map
The Lighthouse
Georgia O'Keeffe, Red Landscape, oil on board, 1916–1917, Panhandle–Plains Historical Museum, West Texas A&M University

Palo Duro Canyon is a canyon system of the Caprock Escarpment located in the Texas Panhandle near the cities of Amarillo and Canyon.

Texas Panhandle

Region of the U.S. state of Texas consisting of the northernmost 26 counties in the state.

Caprock Canyons of Briscoe County.
A canyon formed by Tierra Blanca Creek
The rugged country of Palo Duro Canyon
Amarillo is the largest city in the Texas Panhandle.
Panhandle-Plains Historical Museum in Canyon, Texas.
The Dallam County Courthouse in Dalhart, Texas.

West of the Caprock Escarpment and North and South of the Canadian River breaks, the surface of the Llano Estacado is rather flat.

Garza County, Texas

County located in the U.S. state of Texas.

Post Dispatch newspaper covers local events of Garza County.
Wells Fargo Bank serves Garza County through its outlet in Post.

From 1909 to 1913, C.W. Post built a cotton gin and a cotton mill, and attempted to improve agriculture production through rainmaking, involving the heavy use of explosives fired from kites and towers along the rim of the Caprock Escarpment.

Crosby County, Texas

County located in the U.S. state of Texas.

Mount Blanco
Blanco Canyon
Caprock Escarpment south of Ralls

Confederate veteran Paris Cox first visited the Caprock Escarpment of the Llano Estacado with a group of buffalo hunters in 1879.

Mescalero Ridge

The Mescalero Ridge forms the western edge of the great Llano Estacado, a vast plateau or tableland in the southwestern United States in New Mexico and Texas.

It is the western equivalent of the Caprock Escarpment, which defines the eastern edge of the Llano Estacado.

Brownfield, Texas

City in Terry County, Texas, United States.

Terry County Courthouse was photographed for this postcard mailed in August 1910.
Brownfield High School

The Caprock Escarpment, about 50 miles east, forms a precipitous drop of about 1000 ft and exposes various geologic layers.


Steep slope or long cliff that forms as a result of faulting or erosion and separates two relatively level areas having different elevations.

Escarpment face of a cuesta, broken by a fault, overlooking Trenton, Cloudland Canyon State Park, and Lookout Mountain, in Georgia (USA)
Schematic cross section of a cuesta, dip slopes facing left, and harder rocklayers in darker colors than softer ones
Shaded and colored image from the Shuttle Radar Topography Mission—shows an elevation model of New Zealand's Alpine Fault running about 500 km (300 mi) long. The escarpment is flanked by a chain of hills squeezed between the fault and the mountains of New Zealand's Southern Alps. Northeast is towards the top.
The Sierra Escarpment in California
At the Florida Escarpment, seen in the eastern Gulf of Mexico, the sea bed drops precipitously from less than 300 to 3000 m over a short distance.

Caprock Escarpment (Texas)

Palmer Divide

Named after Colorado Springs founder William Jackson Palmer, the Palmer Divide is a caprock escarpment style ridge in central Colorado that separates the Arkansas River basin from the South Platte basin.