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Definition of CONTINENTAL DIVIDE
the watershed of North America comprising the line of highest points of land separating the waters flowing W from those flowing N or E, coinciding with various ranges of the Rockies, & extending SSE from NW Canada to NW S. America
Variants of CONTINENTAL DIVIDE
Continental Divide or Great Divide
Most notable watershed of the North American continent. The mountains comprising it extend generally north-south, thus dividing the continent's principal drainage into waters flowing eastward (e.g., into Hudson Bay in Canada or the Mississippi River in the U.S.) and waters flowing westward (into the Pacific Ocean). Most of the divide runs along the crest of the Rocky Mountains, through British Columbia in Canada and through the states of Montana, Wyoming, Colorado, and New Mexico in the U.S. Its central point is Colorado, where it has many peaks above 13,000 ft (3,962 m). It continues southward into Mexico, roughly paralleling the Sierra Madre, and into Central America.