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What is A Mountain?


Silly question right but let me indulge.

I was reading Dragon of Ice Spire Peak. The peak is 2500 feet high. My brain approximated that in meters. Around 700.

Apparently 762 meters. Ice Spire Peak. To me that's a glorified hill.

Mount Cargill dominates the skyline here.

676 meters cold Winters day. Doesn't exactly scream ice or Peak. It's a few hours hike basically.

We hike up here. We saw runners today running up it.

It peaks at 739 meters similar in size to Ice Spire Peak. 1-2 hours depending on where you ascend from add another hour if you do the Ridgeline.

Today we went about half way up we like the forest walk.


12 years old school camp we hiked up around 1300 meters (small mountain. It's peak was 1600 meters and you can get up some around 2000 meters without being a climber.

Anyway my perspective may be a bit warped the Sword Mountains equivalent a 5-10 drive from house depending on traffic and a 1-3 hour hike depending on where you want to start from and ascend to.

30 minutes north 700 odd meters up.

Small mountain 1300 meters.

So what's a mountain to you?
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The mountains in the UK are quite dinky, but I have been up quite a few that are bigger than that, and I am no mountaineer.

However "Peak" is often applied to hills, rather than mountains. As in, The Peak District National Park (Highest point Kinder Scout (I've been there*) 636 m).

*There are giant sheep who steel sandwiches.


Any natural geographical feature that rises from the ground that is notably impressive, and is awe-inspiring? ;)
For a fantasy game, I think this is a better way to define it than deciding exactly how many feet or meters tall it must be.

For what it's worth, though, National Goographic claims that "Most geologists classify a mountain as a landform that rises at least 1,000 feet (300 meters) or more above its surrounding area." And they've got "geographic" right there in their name.

I think in general, @Moonmover's definition is the one I would go for in a fantasy game.

However, with a height of ~700m, I think the adventure should really be called "The Wyrm on the hill behind the house" ;)
I never bought the box, but I would have expected an ice spire peak to sit at least at 2000m, with >3000m being more probable. After all, it should also be a prominent landmark in the surrounding area.


Kelvin's Cairn near the Ten-towns in Icewind Dale is 1,000 feet high, and is considered a mountain. It probably helps that it's freestanding, and that the local environment ensures that it has that "snowy peak" look.


Remember that the sharp, craggy appearance that fits our mental conception of "mountain" is a function of how young the mountain is. Rounded "hill" mountains are old. VERY old. So while you get dragons in jagged peaks, beneath ancient hills even worse things wait.

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