Discussion of the evolution of mountain belts is facilitated by use of the term “molasse” for recurring late orogenic clastic wedges deposited in a linear foredeep on the flank of a craton. This tectofacies followed thick geosynclinal marine sequences deformed during major upheaval of the range. Detritus from the uplift and its associated thrust sheets accumulated relatively rapidly on piedmont fans and alluvial plains, and in peripheral paralic environments. Molasse contains an important record of tectonic activity during late stages of orogeny.

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