Abstract

The Mississagi Formation is a thick (up to 3.4 km) Proterozoic arenite sequence that forms part of the Huronian (lower Aphebian graphic) succession of the north shore of Lake Huron, Ontario. The formation is characterized by planar and to a lesser extent trough cross-stratified medium to coarse feldspathic arenites, with only minor amounts of argillite and conglomerate. Although the formation lacks any regular systematic cyclicity, both thinning upward and fining upward sequences can be recognized in some sections. Paleocurrent roses for individual outcrops are typically unimodal, although some bimodal distributions are recognized. The bulk of the formation is interpreted to be the result of deposition in a fluvial environment, principally from bed load and mixed load streams. These rivers were probably marked by a braided stream pattern in which channels were characterized by intermediate to low sinuosities and high width to depth ratios. Regional paleocurrent and petrographic trends indicate that two major river systems were operative. One system flowed east and south from the Sault Ste. Marie – Elliot Lake region to meet a second, southwesterly flowing system originating in the Cobalt Plain. These systems met in the southern Huronian area, from where the coalescing river systems flowed south.

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