Abstract

Three models are evaluated for restoring basement rocks coring tectonic windows (Window-Basement) in the Scandinavian Caledonides; parautochthonous (Model I) and allochthonous (models II/III), with initial imbrication of the Window-Basement post-dating or pre-dating, respectively, that in the external imbricate zone (Lower Allochthon). In Model I, the Window-Basement comes from the eastern margin of the basin now imbricated into the Lower Allochthon, while in models II/III it comes from the western margin. In Model II, the Window-Basement formed a basement-high between Tonian and Cryogenian sediments imbricated into the Middle and Lower allochthons; in Model III deposition of the Lower Allochthon sediments commenced in Ediacaran times. Balanced cross-sections and branch-line restorations of four transects (Finnmark–Troms, Västerbotten–Nordland, Jämtland–Trøndelag, Telemark–Møre og Romsdal) show similar restored lengths for the models in two transects and longer restorations for models II/III in the other transects. Model I can result in c. 280 km wide gaps in the restored Lower Allochthon, evidence for which is not seen in the sedimentology. The presence of <3 km thick alluvial-fan deposits at the base of the Middle Allochthon indicates proximal, rapidly uplifting basement during Tonian–Cryogenian periods, taken as the origin of the Window-Basement during thrusting in models II/III. Model I requires multiple changes in thrusting-direction and predicts major thrusts or back-thrusts, currently unrecognized, separating parts of the Lower Allochthon; neither are required in models II/III. Metamorphic data are consistent with models II/III. Despite considerable along-strike structural variability in the external Scandinavian Caledonides, models II/III are preferred for the restoration of the Window-Basement.

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