Captina Creek cuts through a section of the state known as the Little Switzerland plateau. The plateau is part of the larger Western Allegheny plateau and occupies the extreme eastern end of the state, particularly Jefferson, Belmont and Monroe counties. The upland ridgetops of these counties have horizontally deposited bedrock layers composed of lower Permian Period (~290 myo) sandstones, mudstones and siltstones. The deeper valleys are composed of limestone rock layers that are slightly older from the upper Pennsylvanian Period (~310 myo). When bedrock is exposed at the surface it can play a role in determining what types of vegetation become established on a land parcel.