Abstract

Petrographic, geochemical, and geochronological data are presented on the gneisses of the Bulldog Creek block, the Mount Blackman block, and the Hugh Allan Creek block, which lie to the east of the Southern Rocky Mountain Trench (SRMT) south of Valemount, British Columbia.Petrographical and geochemical data, especially immobile-trace-element ratios (Nb: Y, Ti: Zr), and CaO versus Y and AFM plots are used to deduce the probable origins and protoliths of the gneisses. The Mount Blackman block consists of a psammitic paragneiss, probably derived from an immature arkosic sedimentary protolith, intruded by sills of tholeiitic basalt, now amphibolites. The Bulldog Creek block consists of felsic orthogneisses of calc-alkaline affinity, which are structurally concordant with mafic orthogneisses of possible tholeiitic basalt parentage. The Hugh Allan Creek block consists of a felsic orthogneiss with a probable alkaline granite protolith.Rb–Sr, and some U–Pb analyses show that each block has experienced a separate geological history. The Mount Blackman block psammitic paragneisses are the only analysed gneisses east of SRMT with a probable Archean Rb–Sr model crustal residence age. U–Pb analyses on zircons from these gneisses give a 1950 Ma minimum source rock age, and Rb–Sr whole-rock analyses suggest a 1860 ± 50 Ma age for amphibolite-facies metamorphism of both paragneisses and amphibolites. The Bulldog Creek block gneisses have a metamorphic age of at least 640 Ma, but their Rb–Sr systematics have been extensively disturbed, possibly during Mesozoic retrogressive metamorphism. The Hugh Allan Creek block gneisses have a Rb–Sr model crustal residence age of ~900 Ma and a metamorphic age of 805 ± 11 Ma. It is not possible to correlate any of these lithologies or events across the SRMT with the Malton block, and it is concluded that the SRMT is the site of a major fault or faults at this latitude.

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