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Abstract

The focus of this field trip is the complex lithologic, metamorphic and structural transition between high-grade infrastructural and low-grade suprastructural terranes that define the accreted peri-Gondwanan Neoproterozoic-Cambrian Carolina Zone, an island-arc superterrane in the north-central Piedmont of North Carolina. This transition is now exposed across a metamorphic suite of amphibolite facies layered gneiss plus kyanite-sillimanite zone pelitic schist, and another metamorphic suite of greenschist facies mylonitic and phyllonitic metagranitoids and their undeformed equivalents. A variety of mineral assemblages, fabric elements, and structures within the transition zone may be linked into a progressive sequence recording (1) the transpressional buildup of an Alleghanian collision zone between Laurentia, the Carolina Zone, and Gondwana during Pangean continental amalgamation, and (2) its extensional collapse during the Permo-Triassic through Jurassic rifting and breakup of Pangea.

We will observe the effects of Alleghanian ductile strain superposed on this infrastructural-suprastructural terrane transition, including the interplay between dextral transpression and the generation of syn- to post-kinematic granitic plutons. Metamorphosed volcanogenic and syn-kinematic granitoid rocks record the effects of ductile dextral-slip deformation associated with at least four major fault zones. These fault zones are combined as the Nutbush Creek–Lake Gordon fault system, an integral member of the Eastern Piedmont fault system. Finally, the trip highlights the ductile-brittle effects of Late Permian to Triassic normal-slip faulting, uplift and rift sedimentation in the northern Durham sub-basin of the Triassic Deep River rift basin, as well as crosscutting Jurassic intrusive rocks.

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