The plateau is a highland plain that stretches many miles to the north and west, eventually giving way to wild snow-capped mountains. It is sparsely settled, with its more distant reaches being more or less a frontier. Most of its contact with the rest of the world is via riverboat. Thus the Upper City plays an important role in the economy of the Plateau.
Because the cliffs block the sea breeze the climate of the Plateau is drier than that of the Lowlands, with greater extremes of temperature.
The portion of the Plateau near the sea-cliffs is mainly agricultural, with cattle ranches and farms growing various crops suited to the climate of the region. This has come about only in recent years with the construction of modern cargo-handling facilities between the Upper and Lower Cities. Before that the main trade was fur trapping.
Farther inland, in the foothills and the mountains, mining predominates. In olden times the trade was primarily in gems and precious metals. But as with farming, modern developments in the Ancient City have opened up other opportunities.
Back to the Ancient City.
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