Abstract

An improved paleogeography of the Quebec reentrant has been achieved by examining the nature and distribution of major sediment buildups within this reentrant. The Quebec reentrant has one side produced by rift faults and one side by a major transform fault. The Oak Hill Group was deposited near a triple-rift zone. Clastic sediments of this group formed a large delta that was fed by a major river flowing in the rift valley of the Ottawa graben. The delta must have prograded on a gentle slope platform. No other thick deltaic deposits are known towards the northeast. Instead, facies analyses favor the existence of a promontory near Québec. Still farther to the northeast, the Saguenay graben was not the product of a triple-rift junction. However, it served to funnel sediments to a deep-sea fan, and the adjacent platform was narrow with a steep slope. The lateral distribution of sediments from the Ordovician Taconic orogeny can be explained by this improved paleogeographic reconstruction. The configuration of the Quebec reentrant required the arc to move into the reentrant. The Taconian tectonic wedge progressively accreted the thick sediment buildups that were the Oak Hill delta and the Bas-du-Fleuve deep-sea fan. This allowed them to act as new barriers to orogenic sediment dispersal as the orogeny proceeded.

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