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A long, sharp ridge of soft, clearly differentiated sediments rising between two troughs made by wind or water erosion and extending parallel to the direction of the wind or water flow.

[Of Uyghur dialectal (Tarim Basin) origin, equivalent to modern standard Uyghur yardin, ablative of yar, ridge, steep bank; akin to, Old Turkic yar.]
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.


(Physical Geography) a rocky ridge in the desert formed by wind erosion
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014
References in periodicals archive ?
(Yardangs are ridges formed when winds erode the rock's surrounding material.)
Within the crater are peculiarly layered buttes, known as yardangs.
The ridges, called yardangs, extend as long as 150 kilometers (100 miles) with heights of 75 meters (250 feet).
The geoscientists figured out wind's rock-sculpting abilities by studying gigantic wind-formed ridges of rock called yardangs. Huge fields of yardangs that can be seen from space look like corduroy.
The team studied gigantic keel-shaped ridges of rock called yardangs in the Qaidam Basin in Central Asia.
Much of the formation's terrain is covered with wind-sculpted hills called yardangs, a sign that the exposed material erodes easily, says Watters.
Last but not least, the profile of the huyang, with its massive trunk, which is said to take a thousand years to grow, a thousand to die and yet another thousand to decompose once it has fallen, stamps its characteristic mark on the land both when it is alive--for example those incredible watery landscapes visible on the Tarim's middle reaches, recalling Louisiana bayous in the middle of the desert--and when it is dead and its tortured forms, like an army of skeletons, rise up among the dunes or yardangs, where the shifting riverbed has given way to desert.