The Ouachita Mountains are a collection of mountains, situated in the southeastern parts of Oklahoma and the west central Arkansas. The subterranean roots of the mountain range may widen as far as the central part of Texas, or ahead of it to the existing place of the Marathon Uplift. The Ouachita Mountains, together with the Ozark Mountains, form the Highlands of the United States, one among the few major hilly regions between the Appalachian Mountains and the Rocky Mountains. The highest mountain in the Ouachita Mountain range is Mount Magazine, situated in the west-central part of Arkansas, with the height of 2,753 feet (839 meters).
The term Ouachita is made up of two Choctaw terms, such as ouac, which refers to a buffalo, and chito, which means large. The word Ouachita means the realm of big buffaloes, various herds of those animals having previously covered the grasslands of Ouachita. Consistent with the Encyclopedia of the History and Culture of Oklahoma, the name Ouachita originates from the Caddo word wishita, the French spelling, which means good hunting grounds.
The Ouachita Mountains are a physiographic part of the bigger Ouachita province that incorporates both the Arkansas Valley and the Ouachita Mountains, which in turn is a division of the bigger Interior Highlands physiographic dissection. This mountain range includes Fold Mountains, such as the Appalachian Mountains in the east, and at first, they were a part of that range. At the time of the Pennsylvanian era, approximately before 300 million years, the shoreline of the Gulf of Mexico passed through the central fractions of Arkansas.
The South American Plate flowed northward, riding up beyond the denser continental crust of North America. Geologists refer this collision as the Ouachita orogeny. The impact distorted the superseding plate, and causing the Fold Mountains to be called as the Ouachita Mountains. In the past, the Ouachita Mountains were the same in height to the existing heights of the Rocky Mountains. Due to the age of the Ouachita Mountains, the rocky tops have worn away, leaving the stumpy formations, which are used to be the central part of the heart of the Ouachita Mountains.
Unlike nearly all other mountain collections in the United States, the Ouachita Mountains run west and east instead of south and north. Furthermore, the Ouachita Mountains are unique in that volcanism, intrusions and metamorphism are particularly absent all through the majority of the system. The Ouachita Mountains are inclined to be grouped into different sub-ranges alienated by relatively wide valleys.
The Ouachita Mountains are renowned for the deposits of quartz crystals around the areas of Mount Ida and famous for the Arkansas novaculite whetstones. These quartz crystals were formed as folded rocks, fractured and allowed liquids from deep in the ground to fill up the cracks. The area of the Ouachita Mountains of Arkansas is controlled by Cambrian in the course of the clastic sediments of Pennsylvania, with the lower Collier configuration at the core of the collection and the Atoka configuration on the flanks. The Atoka Formation, created during the Pennsylvanian Era, is a series of marine, generally brown to gray color silty sandstones and grayish-black color shales. Some uncommon siliceous shales and calcareous beds are identified.
The Collier chain is made up of gray to black, shiny shale, holding irregular thin beds of thick, black, and extremely cracked chert. A gap of bluish-gray, thick to spary, slim-bedded limestone may be available. Close to its top, the limestone is pelletoidal and conglomeratic, in part, with cobbles and pebbles of limestone, meta-arkose, chert, and quartz. It was created at the time of the Late Cambrian.