Guyot Landforms


Guyot Landforms Have 3 Main Characteristics:

1. A volcanic mountain under the ocean
2. Flat top at least 660 feet in diameter
3. Stands at least 3,000 feet above the seafloor

Example of a Guyot Landform:

Meiji Seamount, Hawaiian–Emperor seamount chain, Pacific Ocean
The guyot picture above is of the Bear Seamount

What is a Guyot Landform?

A guyot is an elevated landform rising from the bottom of the ocean and has a flat top at least 660 feet in diameter. A guyot must rise at least 3,000 feet above the seafloor. The sides of a guyot usually have a very moderate incline of about 20 degrees.

How are Guyots Formed?

Volcanic activity forms a guyot under the ocean. Vents in the seafloor over an area of volcanic activity may produce lava periodically to grow a guyot or other seamount formation. A seamount is any kind of underwater elevated landform.

How Large is a Guyot?

A guyot should stand at least 3,000 feet above the seafloor. There are also many similar formations that are under 3,000 feet tall. One of the largest guyots stands over 15,000 feet above the seafloor.

Where Can a Guyot Be Found?

Guyots are usually found in deep ocean basins. They can form a chain of seamounts as the ocean plate of the Earth’s crust moves slowly over a hot spot that remains stationary beneath the plate. One of these is the Hawaiian–Emperor seamount chain that includes the Hawaiian Islands and many guyots.

Famous Guyots

• Meiji Seamount, Hawaiian–Emperor seamount chain, Pacific Ocean
• Bowie Seamount, Pratt-Welker / Kodiak-Bowie Seamount chain, Pacific Ocean
• Great Meteor Seamount, Atlantic Ocean

The Meiji Seamount is a guyot and is considered to be the oldest of the seamounts that form the Hawaiian–Emperor seamount chain. Estimated to be 82 million years old, it lies at the northeast end of the chain. The Bowie Seamount is a large guyot that was found 110 miles west of the coast of British Columbia in the Pacific Ocean. It stands about 10,000 feet above the ocean floor and just 79 feet below the water’s surface. It is part of an underwater chain of volcanic mountains produced by another hotspot as the Pacific Ocean plate moves slowly toward the northwest. The Great Meteor Seamount is a very large flat-topped guyot formation in the Atlantic Ocean south of the Azores Islands. It was formed by the New England hotspot which began when the North American continent was located above it over 100 million year ago. The continent has since moved westward, and a chain of seamounts has been created as the Atlantic Ocean plate moves over the hotspot. The Great Meteor Seamount rises almost 16,000 feet above the seafloor, its flat top only about 800 feet under the surface.

Guyot definition:

An undersea volcanic mountain (volcano) with a flat top that is at least 660 feet in diameter and at least 3,000 feet above the ocean floor

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