How well do you know your planet?

These questions are from this year's National Geographic Bee. The first 12 are from the preliminary round. (If your school participated, you may have heard them before.) The last 7 are from the national finals, held in May.

1. Which river forms most of the border between the states of Washington and Oregon: the Suwannee River or the Columbia River?

2. The Wright brothers launched the world's first successful motor-powered airplane in 1903 on the sandy shore of which state: North Carolina or Maine?

3. The temperate rain forest of the Olympic Peninsula, which receives more than 100 inches of rain a year, lies in which region of the United States: the Southeast or the Northwest?

4. Which state borders Yellowstone National Park on the north: Minnesota or Montana? (See illustration, this page.)

5. The easternmost point of land in the contiguous 48 states lies in which state: Maine or Delaware?

6. Which river forms part of the border between Oklahoma and Texas: the Susquehanna River or the Red River?

7. Camp David, the rural retreat where President Clinton mediated a peace conference for the Palestinians and Israelis in the summer of 2000, is in which state: Maryland or Kansas?

8. Which is the only state that reaches from the Atlantic Ocean to the Great Lakes: Vermont or New York?

9. The Susquehanna River flows into which large estuary: Tampa Bay or Chesapeake Bay?

10. The city of Duluth is on the western edge of which lake: Lake Superior or Great Salt Lake?

11. Mauna Kea (MOW-nuh KAY-uh], an island mountain whose peak has a major astronomical observatory, is in which state: California or Hawaii?

12. The highest mountain in the contiguous 48 states, Mount Whitney, is located in which mountain range: the Sierra Nevada or the Great Smokies?

13. Debate over opening the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge to oil exploration concerns the North Slope of which mountain range in Alaska?

14. The Colorado River often fails to reach its natural outlet because it is so heavily diverted for irrigation purposes. Into what body of water does the Colorado River naturally flow?

15. The copper mines of the Keweenaw (KEE-wuh-naw) Peninsula, site of the first mining rush in the United States, were open from 1843 to 1968. This peninsula is part of what state?

16. Keith Willmott has discovered more than 50 new species of butterflies near Cotopaxi National Park in which South American country?

17. Brent Sinclair studies invertebrates in the soil in Antarctica at a research station on Ross Island near what active volcano?

18. Raul Valdez tracks urial, or wild sheep, populations from a cliff in the Badkhyz Nature Reserve southeast of Ashgabat in what country?

19. Russian researcher Pavel Gudkov studies char, a salmon-like fish found in rivers on the Chukchi Peninsula. These fish sometimes migrate to the Seward Peninsula across what strait?


(1) Columbia River; (2) North Carolina; (3) Northwest; (4) Montana; (5) Maine; (6) Red River; (7) Maryland; (8) New York; (9) Chesapeake Bay; (10) Lake Superior; (11) Hawaii; (12) Sierra Nevada; (13) Brooks Range; (14) Gulf of California; (15) Michigan; (16) Ecuador; (17) Mt. Erebus; (18) Turkmenistan; (19) Bering Strait.

(c) Copyright 2001. The Christian Science Monitor

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