The horizontal and vertical motions of the surface of the ground on the arrival of reflected longitudinal and transverse waves from an elastic discontinuity are determined theoretically, with special reference to those parameters encountered in exploring for limestone structures in the foothills of western Canada by wide-angle reflection techniques. The results, which cover a wide range of possible overburden velocities, are expressed by means of curves from which the displacement for any practical elastic contrast, depth, and observation distance may be readily determined. Properties of these curves are examined empirically. The theory assumes plane waves in determining the amplitude ratios at the structural or free surface discontinuities and spherical waves in deriving spread factors. Corrections to the curves on account of a nonuniform overburden velocity are considered in the case of a typical central foothills well. The evidence for PP and PS in model, and to a less extent in field work and the significance of phase changes on reflection are discussed. It is concluded that the horizontal geophone should prove to be a useful additional tool in wide-angle reflection surveys in disturbed foothills zones. Here, it could confirm or refute the arrival of a reflection registered by the vertical geophones in the many cases where doubt exists.

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