Abstract

The middle Eocene White Lake and Skaha formations in the White Lake Basin, British Columbia record the sedimentary and volcanic infilling of a supradetachment basin that developed during the latter stages of Shuswap metamorphic core complex exhumation. The 1.1-km-thick White Lake Formation is characterized by volcanogenic sediment gravity flow, fluvial, and sheetflood facies interbedded with volcanic deposits. Facies relations suggest White Lake strata accumulated on coalesced, west-sloping alluvial fans that drained an active volcanic center. The overlying 0.3-km-thick Skaha Formation records increased tectonism and mass-wasting. Pervasively shattered Skaha avalanche, slide, and sheetflood deposits accumulated on alluvial fans, shed from hanging-wall and footwall sources exposed along the Okanagan Valley fault. Clast compositions of the White Lake and Skaha formations record alluvial and tectonic stripping that locally eliminated hanging-wall blocks. Mylonite clasts in upper Skaha beds imply significant Okanagan Valley fault footwall uplift during the middle Eocene and syntectonic erosion of the Shuswap metamorphic core complex. The syntectonic sedimentary record preserved within the White Lake Basin elucidates the relations and timing between core complex exhumation and extensional tectonism in this region. The White Lake and Skaha formations are the apparent age equivalent of the Klondike Mountain Formation of northern Washington (USA.). White Lake Basin strata, however, are more complexly interstratified, post-depositionally disrupted, and contain a more complete record of core complex unroofing. Variations in the spatial distributions and textural and compositional character of middle Eocene strata in this area underscore the need to exercise care when developing regional-scale sedimentary–tectonic–volcanic models.

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