The Caucasus Mountains
Georgian: კავკასიონი; Armenian: Կովկասյան լեռներ; Azerbaijani: Qafqaz dağları; Russian: Кавказские горы; Turkish: Kafkas Dağları; and Persian: كوه هاى قفقاز.
“The Alps are beautiful, but they cannot win your heart if you have seen the Caucasus.”- Gevorg Bashinjaghian
The Caucasus Mountains are a mountain system between the Black Sea and the Caspian Sea in the Caucasus region, which is one of the most diverse and ancient regions in the world. It includes the Greater Caucasus Range, which extends from Sochi on the northeastern shore of the Black Sea and reaching nearly to Baku on the Caspian Sea, and the Lesser Caucasus. The Meskheti Range is a part of the Lesser Caucasus system. The Greater and Lesser Caucasus ranges are connected by the Likhi Range, which separates the Kolkhida Lowland from the Kura-Aras Lowland. In the southeast are the Talysh Mountains. The Lesser Caucasus and the Armenian Highland constitute the Transcaucasian Highland. The highest peak in the Caucasus range and Europe in general is Mount Elbrus in the Greater Caucasus, which is 5,642 meters (18,510 ft) above sea level.
Some of the highest mountains in the Caucasus Mountain Range include: Elbrus, Dykh-Tau, Shkhara, Koshtan-Tau, Janga (Jangi-Tau), Kazbek, Pushkin, Katyn-Tau, Gistola, Shota Rustaveli, Tetnuldi, Dzhimara, Ushba, Ailama, Tebulos, Bazardüzü, Tepli, Diklo, Shahdagh, and Aragats.
The Caucasus Mountains formed because of a tectonic plate collision between the Arabian plate and the Eurasian plate. The entire region is regularly subjected to strong earthquakes from this activity. The Lesser Caucasus Mountains on the other hand are largely of volcanic origin. The Javakheti Volcanic Plateau in Georgia and the surrounding volcanic ranges which extend well into central Armenia are some of the youngest features of the region.