Abstract

Turbidites, belonging to the β1, member, Cloridorme Formation, are exposed on the north shore of the Gaspé Peninsula, Quebec. Their structural attitude is such that vertical sections through turbidite beds are exposed on the wave-cut platform and their strike is approximately parallel to the paleocurrent direction, as shown by sole marks on the bases of beds.Certain thick turbidite beds, in a distal position, display a sequence of sedimentary structures which differs from the sequence defined by Bouma. Three broad divisions are recognized: a basal division consists of either limestone or quartz granule to pebble conglomerate (0–4 cm thick) or coarse sand graywacke or calcareous wacke (0–15 cm thick). Basal divisions of calcareous wacke frequently display ripple-lamination, parallel lamination, or upstream-inclined laminae. Where the upstream inclined laminae form a single set, they occur below a sinuous profile (wavelength 40–80 cm, and amplitude 2–5 cm).A second division (0–330 cm thick) consists in most places of spindle- or globular-shaped calcareous nodules scattered in an argillaceous host. In some beds, streaking and lobing of light colored, carbonate bearing material is associated with these nodules. Internal hemi-ellipsoid structures, arranged en echelon and convex towards the base of the bed, are displayed from the second division. The upper division consists of fine grained siltstone and shale.The upstream-inclined laminae in the basal division of calcareous wacke beds are interpreted as being the result of the upstream migration of antidunes. The nodules within the second division developed as 'pseudo-nodules'. The hemi-ellipsoid structures resemble damped, large scale (macroturbulent) eddies associated with the flow of dense grain dispersions.Correlation of these beds has been achieved over a distance of 12 km. Basal divisions of granule and pebble conglomerate persist over this distance and show that coarse particles may be transported by turbidity currents over long distances. The sedimentary structures of the basal divisions of several calcareous wacke beds might be interpreted as the result of either an increase in flow regime downcurrent, or of nonpreservation of structures at up-current localities.The beds were probably deposited from turbidity currents composed largely of mud and fine sand, but containing a zone of coarse grains concentrated near the bed. The basal division was deposited from this lower zone and a period of traction formed rippled, flat, or antidune bed forms. Stratification in the basal division was preserved by the rapid deposition on top of sediment that settled en masse from the subsequent high concentration body of the current. The formation of a succession of 'quick' beds led to the sedimentation of the second division. The flows responsible for the sequence of structures observed and the downcurrent persistence of the beds probably approached closely a state of 'autosuspension'.

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