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Fifty States

Noncontiguous States map

Noncontiguous States

The United States is a "fragmented country" because it is noncontiguous, or separated by other countries or bodies of water. Alaska and Hawaii are totally separate from the other 48 states, as the small map on the right shows, along with each state's actual location. Alaska shares a border with Canada, and Hawaii is surrounded by the Pacific Ocean. The remaining 48 states are contiguous, or touching each other.

Pacific Coast States map

Pacific Coast States

The states of the contiguous 48 that border the Pacific Ocean include Washington, Oregon, and California. They are characterized by soaring, snow-capped mountains surrounded by fertile valleys and forests, and contain arid desert areas to the east. This region is also geologically active, with earthquake-prone areas and volcanoes.
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