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Old 12-26-2014, 02:00 AM
 
Location: Los Angeles
2,436 posts, read 2,122,343 times
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The West is commonly known for being the most geographically diverse part of the country. California is probably the most diverse. It's hard to pick another Western state after California.
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Old 12-26-2014, 03:15 AM
 
Location: Somewhere below Mason/Dixon
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North Carolina. It has beaches and a flat coastal plain, it has the piedmont and of course the mountains. Also Oregon and Washington, also has beaches, mountains and a cold desert region in the east. The OP discounted California, but I will say that no state even comes close the level of diversity that state has. I reckon that is why the OP wanted to not include it, since its the obvious winner.
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Old 12-27-2014, 07:00 PM
 
Location: Bellingham, WA
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Other than California (and Alaska), I'd say Washington and Oregon, with a nod to WA for being a little more dramatic and extreme. The fact that you can drive from the Pacific Coast through rain forests, then up and over alpine scenery before dropping into desert canyons in a few hours is absolutely amazing.

Last edited by bartonizer; 12-27-2014 at 07:22 PM..
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Old 12-27-2014, 07:15 PM
 
Location: Los Angeles
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bartonizer View Post
Other than California (and Alaska), I'd say Washington and Oregon, with a nod to WA for being a little more dramatic and extreme. The fact that you can drive from the Pacific Coast through rain forests, then up and over alpine scenery and dropping into desert canyons in a few hours is absolutely amazing.
Yes, this.
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Old 12-27-2014, 07:29 PM
 
Location: Who Cares, USA
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Wow, nobody has said Washington yet? For a state it's size, WA is extremely diverse in it's terrain, climate, vegetation, and elevation. We have rainforest, desert, glaciers, grassy plains, islands, several different mountain ranges, and several different microclimates... all within an area less than half the size of California.

I would say Washington is second only to California in the lower 48 for geographical diversity.

EDIT: nevermind. I see one other poster mentioned WA along with Oregon.
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Old 12-27-2014, 10:26 PM
 
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Definitely Washington. There is everything from the coastline, rainforest, mountains, deserts, and everything in between. Here are some good Google Street view images.

https://www.google.com/maps/@48.3886...2e0!3e11?hl=en

https://www.google.com/maps/@48.4064...2e0!3e11?hl=en

https://www.google.com/maps/@48.0636...vBtA!2e0?hl=en

https://www.google.com/maps/@47.6248...KsiQ!2e0?hl=en

https://www.google.com/maps/@46.9441...ka-g!2e0?hl=en

https://www.google.com/maps/@46.7826...tH0g!2e0?hl=en

https://www.google.com/maps/@46.4932...iXDA!2e0?hl=en

https://www.google.com/maps/@46.2876...s64w!2e0?hl=en

https://www.google.com/maps/@47.1745...Ysmg!2e0?hl=en

https://www.google.com/maps/@47.4273...4EQQ!2e0?hl=en

https://www.google.com/maps/@46.9414...do0Q!2e0?hl=en
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Old 12-29-2014, 09:40 AM
 
Location: Milwaukee
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Definitely wouldn't include Texas - the diversity comes from its giant territory, not its constantly evolving countryside. It technically qualifies due to that size, but I don't think it's in the spirit of the OP. I'd go WA/OR, probably.
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Old 12-30-2014, 01:21 PM
 
Location: Bmore, The cursed land of -> Hotlanta -> Charlotte
305 posts, read 321,393 times
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Another Oregon vote here. And actually Eastern Oregon gets more sun versus Western, makes it more diverse.
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Old 12-30-2014, 01:27 PM
 
Location: Houston, Texas
368 posts, read 398,119 times
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Texas is pretty diverse. Also, Hawaii has pretty much every type of geography in the world, just on the Big Island alone.
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Old 12-30-2014, 02:19 PM
 
4,740 posts, read 8,796,650 times
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Alabama has geographical diversity, plus it is one of the most biodiverse States. Alabama has mountains, piedmont plateaus, coastal plains, prairies, beaches, swamps, and river valleys.

"Alabama is composed of five geographic regions: the Coastal Plain, the Piedmont region, the Blue Ridge region, the Ridge/Valley region, and the Cumberland Plateau."

"The state of Alabama has a very distinct and incredibly rugged geography. In terms of its sheer geographic diversity and the wildlife to accompany it, it is one of the most fascinating states in North America."

The Geography of Alabama - Geography.Answers.com

Alabama really shines in terms of biological diversity.

"Four states in particular emerge from these analyses as having exceptional levels of
biodiversity—California, Hawaii, Texas, and Alabama."

"Alabama emerges from this analysis as the leading eastern state for species diversity... The state is home to an exceptionally rich freshwater fauna, thanks to an ancient and complex geological terrain and more than 235,000 miles of waterways spanning three major river basins. The state was also spared from the direct effects of the Pleistocene glaciers, enabling its flora and fauna to continue diversifying even during this unsettled geological period."

"..., amphibians and freshwater fishes reach their highest levels of diversity in the southeastern United States. Indeed, with its combination of Appalachian highlands and humid coastal lowlands, this region is a global center for freshwater diversity."

Natureserve 'States of the Union: Ranking America’s Biodiversity'

BTW California, Hawaii, Texas, and Alabama are ranked as the most biodiverse States.
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