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Unless otherwise noted, the source for the geography information is Scientific American and National Geographic.
Europe is the only continent without a desert.
The world’s five longest rivers are:
1. Nile River Africa 4,240 miles
2. Amazon River South America 4,000 miles
3. Yangtze River Asia 3,964 miles
4. Mississippi/Missouri Rivers North America 3,710 miles
5. Yenisey-Angara River Asia 3,440 miles
In 2001, the five most populous cities in the United States were:
  1. New York, NY (7,420,000 people)
  2. Los Angeles, CA (3,598,000 people)
  3. Chicago, IL (2,802,000 people)
  4. Houston, TX (1,786,000 people)
  5. Philadelphia, PA (1,436,000 people)
The Atlantic Ocean island group the Azores belong to Portugal.
The city of Rome is on the Tiber River.
The seven hills of Rome are:
  1. Aventine
  2. Caelian
  3. Capitoline
  4. Esquiline
  5. Palatine
  6. Quirinal
  7. Viminal
Angel Falls in Venezuela is the world’s tallest waterfall. It is 3,212 feet in height!
In 2005, Africa had 55 countries, which is more than any other continent.
The Seven Natural Wonders of the world are:
  1. The Northern Lights, Alaska/Canada
  2. Mount Everest, Nepal/China
  3. Victoria Falls, Zambia/Zimbabwe
  4. The Grand Canyon, United States
  5. The Great Barrier Reef, Australia
  6. Paricutin Volcano, Mexico
  7. The Harbor of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Vatican City is the world’s smallest country with an area of 0.17 square miles.
The world’s five largest countries are:
  1. Russia (6.6 million square miles)
  2. Canada (3.9 million square miles)
  3. China (3.7 million square miles)
  4. United States (3.6 million square miles)
  5. Brazil (3.3 million square miles)
Earth’s total surface area is approximately 197 million square miles.
Land accounts for 29% of Earth’s surface, and water covers the remaining 71%.
The world’s major oceans are:
    million sq mi % of Earth’s water area deepest point in feet
1. Pacific Ocean 64.2 46.0 35,827
2. Atlantic Ocean 33.4 23.9 28,232
3. Indian Ocean 28.4 20.3 23,376
4. Arctic Ocean 3.7 2.6 16,804
The Earth’s seven continents, their areas and populations are:
  million sq mi million people people/sq mi
Asia 17.2 3,930 228
Africa 11.7 782 69
North America 9.4 484 51
South America 6.9 343 50
Antarctica 5.5 0 0
Europe 4.0 729 182
Australia 3.3 31 9
The Earth’s eight largest islands and their areas are:
  million sq mi
Greenland 0.840
New Guinea 0.306
Borneo 0.280
Madagascar 0.227
Baffin 0.196
Sumatra 0.165
Honshu 0.088
Great Britian 0.084
The world’s largest lake is the Caspian Sea between Europe and Asia.
It covers 144,000 square miles.
Named a sea, the Caspian is in fact a lake because it has no outlet.
The main branch of the Great Wall of China is between 1,500 and 2,000 miles long.
Counting all its branches, the wall is over 4,000 miles long.
The wall varies in height from 16 to 33 feet.
The Great Wall is the only human-made structure that has been seen from outer space.
Alaska is the northernmost, easternmost, and westernmost state in the United States
because some of the Aleutian Islands are east of the 180° meridian of longitude, placing them in the Eastern Hemisphere.
With more than 3 million lakes, Alaska has more lakes than any other state in the US.
The Tropic of Cancer is the northernmost latitude on Earth where the sun can ever be directly overhead. It is approximately 23.5° North Latitude.
The Tropic of Capricorn is the southernmost latitude on Earth where the sun can ever be directly overhead. It is approximately 23.5° South Latitude.
“The Tropics” refers to the region between the Tropic of Cancer and the Tropic of Capricorn.
The Tropics cover 26% of Earth’s surface.
The names of the five Great Lakes are:
  1. Lake Huron
  2. Lake Ontario
  3. Lake Michigan
  4. Lake Erie
  5. Lake Superior
The handy acronym HOMES can help you remember these names.
2004 Asian Tsunami facts: Source: United States Geological Survey


You can determine how far away a lightning bolt is in miles by counting the seconds between the flash and thunder, and dividing by 5.
Cold water robs the body’s heat 32 times faster than cold air.
Notable temperatures:
Fahrenheit Celsius Kelvin
212° 100° 373° Boiling point of water at sea level
136° 58° 331° Highest recorded atmospheric temperature
El Azizia, Libya, September 13, 1992
94° 34° 307° Highest average annual temperature
Dallol, Ethiopia
32° 273° Freezing point of water at sea level
-129° -89° 184° Lowest recorded atmospheric temperature
Vostok, Antarctica, July 21, 1983
-492° -273° Absolute zero
The wind chill is how cold it feels outside when the effects of temperature and wind speed are combined.

To calculate wind chill:
WC = 0.0817 x (3.71V(.5) + 5.81 - 0.25V) x (T - 91.4) + 91.4
(.5) is an exponent,
WC is the wind chill in degrees Fahrenheit,
V is the wind speed in miles per hour,
and T is the temperature in degrees Fahrenheit
A solstice is the point in time when the sun is at a maximum or minimun angle from the Celestial Equator, and days and nights are the most unequal in duration. In the Northern Hemisphere, the winter solstice is on or near December 21, and the summer solstice is on or near June 21.
Eight climactic zones in each hemisphere are defined in terms of precipitation. They are:
  1. Equatorial – rain in all seasons
  2. Tropical – summer rain with dry winter
  3. Semiarid Tropical – slight summer rain
  4. Arid – dry all year
  5. Dry Mediterranean – slight winter rain
  6. Mediterranean – dry summers with winter rain
  7. Temperate – precipitation in all seasons
  8. Polar – little precipitation in all seasons
Five climactic zones are defined in terms of temperature. They are:
  1. Tropical – annual and monthly averages above 68° F
  2. Subtropical – 4 to 11 months above 68° F, and the balance between 50° and 68° F
  3. Temperate – 4 to 11 months at 50° to 68° F, and the rest cooler
  4. Cold – 1 to 4 months at 50° to 68° F, and the rest cooler
  5. Polar – 12 months below 50° F


The Five Outward Bound Principles:
  1. An Enterprising Curiosity
  2. An Undefeatable Spirit
  3. Tenacity in Pursuit
  4. Sensible Self-Denial
  5. Above all, Compassion


Conversions to Metric measures:
symbol when you know multiply by to find symbol
in inches 2.54 centimeters cm
ft feet 0.3048 meters m
yd yards 0.9144 meters m
mi miles 1.609344 kilometers km
in² square inches 6.4516 square centimeters cm²
ft² square feet 0.092903 square meters
yd² square yards 0.836127 square meters
mi² square miles 2.589988 square kilometers km²
acres 0.404686 hectares ha
oz ounces 28.349523 grams g
lb pounds 0.453592 kilograms kg
short tons 0.907185 metric tons t
in³ cubic inches 16.387064 milliliters mL
liq oz liquid ounces 29.57353 milliliters mL
pt pints 0.473176 liters L
qt quarts 0.946353 liters L
gal gallons 3.785412 liters L
ft³ cubic feet 0.028317 cubic meters
yd³ cubic yards 0.764555 cubic meters
°F degrees
5/9 after
subtracting 32
degrees Celsius
Conversions from Metric measures:
symbol when you know multiply by to find symbol
cm centimeters 0.393701 inches in
m meters 3.280840 feet ft
m meters 1.093613 yards yd
km kilometers 0.621371 miles mi
cm² square centimeters 0.155000 square inches in²
square meters 10.76391 square feet ft²
square meters 1.195990 square yards yd²
km² square kilometers 0.386102 square miles mi²
ha hectares 2.471054 acres
g grams 0.035274 ounces oz
kg kilograms 2.204623 pounds lb
t metric tons 1.102311 short tons
mL milliliters 0.061024 cubic inches in³
mL milliliters 0.033814 liquid ounces liq oz
L liters 2.113376 pints pt
L liters 1.056688 quarts qt
L liters 0.264172 gallons gal
cubic meters 35.31467 cubic feet ft³
cubic meters 1.307951 cubic yards yd³
°C degrees Celsius
9/5 and
add 32


No words rhyme with orange, purple, or silver.
40% of the world population has never made a phone call.


Mont Blanc in Western Europe
Mont Blanc in Western Europe

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