Water creates, shapes, and destroys
rocks as it cycles among land, sea, and air. When a river like the Mississippi dumps sediment into the sea,
sand and clay settle in layers on the bottom, where they slowly turn into
sandstone and shale. Meanwhile, the ocean water steadily evaporates into
the atmosphere...then falls as rain or snow...which replenishes groundwater
and the river...whose erosive energy carves away rock...creating new
sediments that the river transports to the sea.....completing the cycle.
The Mississippi River empties into the Gulf of Mexico, depositing
loads of sediment.