The cliffs of the Theron Mountains

Romain Tartese | 9 Dec 2019

Hi all, I thought I’d write a quick update on where we all are at the moment. Geoff, Wouter and field guide Rob have made it to our meteorite search site south of Halley, and have some of the kit with them. I am at Halley, where I should be joined by Katie later tonight (Monday) as she is flying from Rothera right now.

A few Twin Otter loads of fuel drums are still needed to be transported nearer to our field site before we can all head off there and start searching these lost meteorites!

And this morning I went on such a fuel trip with pilot Andy. We headed off from Halley toward the Theron Mountains, which are located at the northern end of the Transantarctic Mountains, north of the Shackelton Range (see map below).

TheronMap_Cropped
Location of the Theron Mountains [modified from Leat (2008) On the long-distance transport of Ferrar magmas, Geological Society, London, Special Publications 302, 45-61].

And after about an hour and a half flying, I finally got to see the the Theron Mountains.

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Approaching the Theron Mountains [Credit: R. Tartese].

The cliffs of the Theron Mountains display sub-horizontal Jurassic (~180 million years old) basaltic lava flows, which are part of the Ferrar large igneous province, intruded into flat lying Permian (~250-300 million years old) continental sedimentary formations.

DSC01902_Small
Cliffs at the Theron Mountains, with patches of blue ice at the bottom [Credit: R. Tartese].

But flying the Twin Otter for a little while during the journey was surely the best bit of it all!

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