Central America Ranges
|Range Type||Miscellaneous physical or political Feature|
|Highest Point||Volcán Tajumulco (4220 m/13,845 ft)|
|Countries||Mexico (33%), Nicaragua (17%), Honduras (15%), Guatemala (14%), Panama (9%), Costa Rica (7%), Belize (3%), El Salvador (3%)|
(numbers are approximate percentage of range area)
|Area||775,672 sq km / 299,487 sq mi|
Area may include lowland areas
|Extent||1,601 km / 995 mi North-South|
1,948 km / 1,210 mi East-West
|Center Lat/Long||14° 25' N; 85° 53' W|
|Map Link||Microsoft Bing Map|
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For the purposes of the PEMRACS, Central America runs from the Ithmus of Tehuantepec in Mexico to the swamps of Darien on the Colombia-Panama border. This is a mostly linear mountain system, well-bounded by the Pacific to the southwest and the Caribbean Sea and Gulf of Mexico to the northeast. Except for the Yucatan Peninsula and the Caribbean lowlands of Nicaragua, the area is almost enitrely mountainous.
This area has a clear political and geographic identity and unity--except for the parts of Mexico included, the Central American Ranges are equivalent to the seven small Central American countries. However, it is interesting to note that the lowest saddle along the Continental Divide that runs along the backbone of Central America is in Nicaragua, not at Tehuantepec or Darien.
So, while this Nicaragua saddle is not used as a divider between Range2s, it does set off the Southern Cental America Range3 (Costa Rica and Panama) from the other sub-ranges of Central America: Central Central America (Nicaragua, Honduras, El Salvador); the Guatemala Ranges; the Chiapas ranges of Mexico; and the Yucatan.
|Map of Central America Ranges|
Click on red triangle icons for links to other ranges.
Note: Range borders shown on map are an approximation and are not authoritative.
Click Here for a Full Screen Map
|Other Ranges: To go to pages for other ranges either click on the map above, or on range names in the hierarchy snapshot below, which show the parent, siblings, and children of the Central America Ranges.|
|North America||Level 1 (Parent)|
|         Alaska-Yukon Ranges||Level 2 (Sibling)|
|         North America Arctic Islands||Level 2 (Sibling)|
|         Pacific Ranges||Level 2 (Sibling)|
|         Intermountain West||Level 2 (Sibling)|
|         Rocky Mountains||Level 2 (Sibling)|
|         North America Plains||Level 2 (Sibling)|
|         Appalachian Mountains||Level 2 (Sibling)|
|         Central Mexican Ranges||Level 2 (Sibling)|
|         Central America Ranges||Level 2|
|                 Yucatan||Level 3 (Child)|
|                 Chiapas Ranges||Level 3 (Child)|
|                 Guatemala Ranges||Level 3 (Child)|
|                 Central Central America||Level 3 (Child)|
|                 Costa Rica-Panama Ranges||Level 3 (Child)|
|         Caribbean Area||Level 2 (Sibling)|
Major Peaks of the Central America Ranges
|Ten Highest Peaks|
|1.||Volcán Tajumulco||4220||13,845||Guatemala Ranges|
|2.||Volcán Tacaná||4067||13,343||Chiapas Ranges|
|3.||Volcán Acatenango||3975||13,041||Guatemala Ranges|
|4.||Cerro Chemal||3837||12,589||Guatemala Ranges|
|5.||Chirripó Grande||3819||12,530||Costa Rica-Panama Ranges|
|6.||Cerro Ventisqueros||3812||12,507||Costa Rica-Panama Ranges|
|7.||Cerro Piramide||3807||12,490||Costa Rica-Panama Ranges|
|8.||Volcán Santa María||3772||12,375||Guatemala Ranges|
|9.||Volcán de Fuego||3763||12,346||Guatemala Ranges|
|10.||Volcán de Agua||3761||12,339||Guatemala Ranges|
|Sub-peaks are excluded from this list. List may not be complete, since only summits in the PBC Database are included.|
Photos of Peaks in the Central America Ranges
|Volcán Acatenango: Volcán Acatenango in Guatemala from the nearby saddle, looking at the higher peak.|
|Volcán de Agua: Volcan Agua from the plaza in Santa Maria de Jesus, Guatemala at sunrise|
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