Time turned to stone, Part 2: The Giants’ Causeway; time as process

More classic British geology

Primate's Progress

The Antrim Lava field shown within the British Tertialry Volcanic Province, itself part of the North Atlantic Lava Field. By Hazel Muzzy (Own work), via Wikimedia Commons.

An earlier post here described Siccar Point, where an 80,000,000 year time gap is present between near-vertical tilted strata, and their roughly horizontal overlay. This gap corresponds to the formation and subsequent erosion of fold mountains thrown up when Iapetus, precursor to the modern North Atlantic, closed. Today’s post is (mainly) about the Giants’ Causeway, part of the enormous lava field first produced when the modern North Atlantic began to open, and still growing at the Mid-Atlantic Ridge and, most spectacularly, in Iceland. Fragments of the initial outpouring were separated as the Eurasian and North American plates moved away from each other, and now can be found as far apart as Greenland and Denmark.

The Antrim Lava Field, of which the Causeway is…

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