John D. Haefele, author of Lovecraft: The Great Tales, sends in a link to a little discovery of ranges of supermountains in the dim past of the planet.
“Another example of why I find HPL fascinating and fun,” he explains.
Everest Out of the Running!
Apparently Lovecraft — somehow — extrapolated earth’s actual past, aspects unknown at the time, to incorporate into his fiction….
This newly discovered super mountain range existed 2 billion years ago, on the southern super-continent. One might say it arose just before, or during, the period HPL’s Old Ones lived on earth, initially undersea.
It was certainly in their sphere millions of years later, and undergoing further changes — “mountains of madness” — when they occupied the land, a stage in their earth-history that began about 1 billion years ago.
The second new-found range, per the article, existed 650-500 million years ago; whereas Lovecraft’s fictional more terrible range, if one accepts conventional interpretation of “At the Mountains of Madness,” made its appearance merely 50 million ago.
Only, there’s no reason to necessarily think the two need be conflated, that this older range didn’t exist somewhere outside the framework of his story. (Which, as you know, fits my own interpretation of “At the Mountains of Madness,” that doesn’t see HPL’s second range on our earth at all — rather it is a darker, different version of the first super-range, appearing suddenly amidst the din of an impinging, adjacent reality.)