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The Drents Plateau is a plateau in Drenthe that's about ten to twenty metres above sea level. Parts of the plateau reached Groningen and Friesland. Roughly speaking, the area is located between the cities of Coevorden, Groningen, Steenwijk, and Emmen.
Shaped by the Ice
The plateau formed during the penultimate ice age, the Saale Glaciation. Huge packs of land ice pushed up the earth's surface, creating the plateau. As the earth started to warm up again, ice rivers eroded lines into the landscape. This is how the Hondsrug, Tynaarloorug, Rolderrug, and Zijerrug were formed. These sand ridges run from north-west to south-east across the plateau. The ice water also formed the stream valleys. The Drentsche Aa is one of the most beautiful stream valleys in Drenthe.
In some areas, the ice created small push moraines, such as the Havelterberg, At 17 metres above sea level, this is Drenthe's highest point. Another higher area on the plateau is the Ellertsveld, known for the legend of Ellert and Brammert.
Traces of Settlements
The soil of the Drents plateau consists of boulder clay. In many places it is covered by a layer of sand deposited there during the last glaciation. Thus dry soil and sheltered surroundings made it ideal for human settlement. Prehistoric inhabitants of Drenthe left clear traces in the landscape. For instance, there is a long string of dolmens and burial mounds, as well as a large collection of angerdörfen.