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It is not a former shield volcano, but comprises many individual volcanoes, which are superimposed.Thus it consists of a multitude of overlapping basalt terraces, which descend from the Oberwald, the high central plateau, 600 to 773 metres high, in series of stepped rings to the edges of the mountain region.
Not only does a section of the Rhine-Weser watershed run over the Vogelsberg, but also (within the Weser and Fulda systems) the watersheds between the Eder and Schwalm and Lower Fulda as well as (within the Rhine basin) that between the Main and the Lahn.There is also this geological divide with the Fulda-Haune Tableland, which lies in front of the Knüll to the northeast.Between them is the Großenlüder-Lauterbacher Graben. By contrast, in the north, the vulcanite does not end until it reaches the adjacent North Vogelsberg Foreland, i.e. Even the Anterior Vogelsberg which lies outside the latter region still has large areas of basaltic rock.The following natural regions form the Vogelsberg: Soils and rocks are, in all parts of the Vogelsberg – with the exception of the Giesel Forest – similar, but average annual temperatures drop noticeably towards the centre of the range (varying by up to 5 K) and the annual precipitation rises towards the Oberwald to an average of 1,200 mm.The basalt areas of the Vogelsberg continue towards the east and north into its neighbouring natural regions, whilst the Giesel Forest in the east is already on bunter sandstone, like the rest of the natural regions towards the east.