Abstract

Vashon Drift was deposited during the Fraser Glaciation (late Wisconsinan) at the time of maximum expansion of the southwestern part of the Cordilleran ice sheet when it filled the Georgia Depression about 14 500 years ago. The drift is present throughout the depression and comprises till and glaciofluvial and glaciolacustrine sediments derived from source areas surrounding the coastal trough. It is overlain by Capilano Sediments and underlain by Quadra Sand, also of Fraser age. Drift deposition was diachronous and complex, probably caused by alpine glaciers coalescing in the trough with the ice margin repeatedly grounding and floating in seawater. Studies of bedrock striae, till fabrics, and clast provenance reveal that Vashon ice movement was generally southward, although locally controlled by topography. A time–space diagram is presented that confirms the long-held hypothesis that advance and decay of Vashon ice were rapid.

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