architecture, history and travel of Sri Lanka
There are Two Massifs found in Sri Lanka, namely the Knuckles Massif and the Rakwana Massif which is home to the Sinharaja Forest. The Knuckles Massif is the most prominent out of the two. A Massif is a part of the earth's crust confined with faults and shifted to form peaks of a mountain range. The Knuckles Mountain Range consists with a Main Range and about four more sub ranges. The Main range can be seen distinctively from Kandy area, the section which resembles a clenched fist is familiar to many. The Knuckles Peak [6112 ft] is one of those seen in the clenched fist like peaks.
Since Knuckles Mountain Range became a World Heritage site in July 2010, the interest to learn about the Knuckles area rekindled with many would be visitors in future to Knuckles. This page will enlighten the visitor with geographical details of the Knuckles Massif and the Mountain Range. Some interesting Maps are presented here which are hard to come across.
Panoramic view of the Northern Knuckles Range - Res. 5,125px × 550px
Click on Panoramic Thumbnail to see full size image and click again when (+) cursor appears- use Horizontal Slider to view the Panorama - Resolution. 5,125px × 550px -[850 kb ]
Clicking the above thumbnail [made by combining 7 Photos] will open a Panoramic landscape view of the Knuckles Mountain Range seen from the top of Pitawela Pathana [ Mini World's End].
Considering the whole island geographically, it can be said that there are three main plains [peneplains]. The first or the lowest is the land mass of up to 400 feet or less, where the mean value can be said to about 100 feet.
The middle peneplain is to a height of around 1000 feet but in some places it may be around 2500 feet.
The highest plain is on average to a height of around 5000 to 6000 feet from the sea level, where you find the highest mountains of the island.
See the following map to have an idea of the Central Hill country and the southern part of the island. Here you can see the placements of Rakwana Massif and Knuckles Massif, both are being landmarks of World Heritage Sites. The PDF file views can be magnified to see detailed selections.
Location of Knuckles Mountain Range [File size- 89 kb]
Exploring the areas near to Knuckles Mountain Range, here one will see the interesting geological locations of Wild life sanctuaries or National Parks of Wasgomuwa,Galoya and Maduru Oya.
Knuckles and the National Parks nearby [File size- 258 kb]
The more detailed region identifications are included in this map in which you will see the River Mahaweli bordering the Southern part of the Knuckles Massif and then turning Noth almost 90 degrees and running at some distance to Knuckles' Eastern escapements.
Knuckles Mountain Range and the Mahaweli River [File size- 129 kb]
The Northern part of the Knuckles mountain range and the areas of Riverston, Pitawela patana [Grassland], The Mini World's end can be identified here.
Knuckles, Pitawela Grasslands and Mini World's End [File size- 126 kb]
The Main Peaks of the Knuckles Mountain range is identified here and the terrain can be closely looked at.
Main Peaks of Knuckles Range [File size- 67 kb]
The Knuckles Massif contains several Mountain Ranges. The main range runs from North West to South West and three sub ranges parallel to each other from South West to North East direction originating from the Main Knuckles Range. The accompanying map shows the four mountain ranges of the Knuckles.
Main Range and Sub Ranges of Knuckles [Image size 226 kb]
A section of the Knuckles Mountain Range with Peaks identified and to a larger scale is prepared based on the Sri Lanka Survey Department's 1" to 1 Mile Ragala Map.
Peaks of Knuckles Mountain Range - Map #1 [Image size 537 kb]
Cooray P.G. The Knuckles Massif-A Portfolio
Cooray P.G. The Geology of Sri Lanka