Analysis of 56 outcrop exposures in cut banks along the Nottawasaga River in southern Simcoe County, Ontario, Canada, has led to the identification of eight stratigraphic units (SU1–SU8) that represent a record of changing environmental conditions during deglaciation and exhibit strong controls on shallow groundwater flow in the region. The stratigraphic succession is floored by the Late Wisconsin Newmarket Till (SU1), which is locally overlain by ice-proximal debris flow deposits (SU2). These glacial sediments are overlain by glaciolacustrine silt rhythmites (SU3) that pass upwards into deltaic sand (SU4) and channelized fluviodeltaic sand and gravel (SU5). Lying above the fluvial deposits are widespread interbedded glaciolacustrine sands and silt (SU6), which coarsen up-section toward the ground surface. The succession is locally capped by fluviodeltaic (SU7) and younger fluvial (SU8) deposits. These SUs record sedimentary environments that existed during deglaciation of the region and provide insight into the evolution of glacial lakes Schomberg and Algonquin and the Nipissing phase of the upper Great Lakes. The environmental changes described from sediments along the Nottawasaga River provide insights into basin-scale events that occurred throughout the upper Great Lakes during deglaciation. Qualitative observations of groundwater discharge from sediments at outcrop faces are used to characterize the hydraulic function of the stratigraphic units as well as possible preferential groundwater flow pathways in the shallow subsurface.

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