We see no vestige of a beginning...........
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....no prospect of an end. Quotation by James Hutton in the late 1700's.
This feature, called Hutton's Section, is possibly one of the most well known geological features in the area and is frequently visited by geology students.
Close examination shows an area of old sedimentary rock that has been torn away by a later intrusion of volcanic or igneous rock forming Salisbury Crags.
What remains of the sediment has been curved upwards by the hot volcanic magma forcing its way over the older sediment. Look for a "frozen wave" of torn sediment at the right hand end of the outcrop just beyond the notice board. This particular section is one of a series discovered by Hutton known as Hutton's Unconformities. A contemporary sketch of another of these (at Jedburgh) is shown on this cache page.
Subsequent dating has shown that the magma here is about 25 million years younger than the underlying sedimentary rock. In the late 1700’s, when James Hutton was looking at these rocks, it was generally believed that Earth had come into creation only around six thousand years earlier. Theories advanced by Hutton led him to being described as the father of modern geology and geological or “deep” time stretching back many millions of years.
In a 1788 paper he presented at the Royal Society of Edinburgh Hutton remarked, "....we find no vestige of a beginning, no prospect of an end."
Before this time, the understanding of the formation and evolution of the Earth was strongly influenced by the biblical time scale and the “Neptunist” theory that rocks been laid down as a sediment in a large ocean.
His theory is sometimes known as the ” Plutonist” theory, indicating that igneous rocks were derived as magmas from the deep interior of the Earth and not by sedimentation in a primordial ocean and that this must have taken a very long time - much longer than attributed by any biblical time scale.
Your task is to draw your own field sketch of the section, which as every good geologist knows must include plenty of SNOT
1. SCALE such as a stick person or other scale item.
2. NOTES or labels for the torn and undisturbed sedimentary rock, Main bedding plane, and Dolerite intrusion.
3. ORIENTATION, which direction you are looking
4. TITLE for your field sketch
This should be scanned into your log and must be accompanied by a photo of yourself and GPS at the Information Board with the Hutton Section in the background. Failing this, take a photo of your fully labelled sketch with a digital camera and upload the picture.
These educational guidelines must be followed or your log will be deleted. These are set out by the Earthcache organisation and must be followed to claim the cache.
With thanks to and in memory of, Billy Twigger who set this type of logging requirement for one of his Earthcaches in the Moine Thrust GeoPark in NW Scotland. GCQ5G2 (Moine Thrust Earthcache). Please note: I no longer cache actively, but have kept these caches (Earth and Virtuals) for the enjoyment of those who do. I may not reply, therefore, to your email. If you are really looking for a reply, please don't log this cache.
(No hints available.)