December 30, 2013

0928 CANADA (Alberta) - The rugged Alberta Badlands

Badlands are a type of dry and barren terrain where softer sedimentary rocks and clay-rich soils have been extensively eroded by wind and water. Canyons, ravines, gullies, hoodoos, winding channels and other such geological forms are common in badlands, which often have a spectacular colour display that alternates from dark black/blue coal stria to bright clays to red scoria. The term is a translation from les mauvaises terres, words coined by early French trappers and traders who traveled on the White River area in North Dakota. Still earlier in history, Sioux Indians also referred to the barren and rugged landscape of South Dakota as Mako Sika, meaning land bad.

One of the best known and large badland area is in canadian province Alberta, particularly in the valley of the Red Deer River. Its topography is largely the result of rapid erosion by water that occurred following the last ice age. Even today the Red Deer River continues to carve its way through the valley. The rapid rate of erosion is one of the reasons new dinosaur bones and fossils are uncovered each year. The other reason is that 75 million years ago Alberta had lush coastal forests, deltas, swamps and flood plains. It's believed that major storms would scour and submerge the landscape from time to time, drowning its inhabitants in a soggy graveyard of mud, that later become fossils. In this area is located Dinosaur Provincial Park, well known as one of the richest dinosaur fossil locales in the world, reason for what was designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1979. 

Badlands - Wikipedia
Badlands - University of Calgary official website
Canadian Badlands - Official website 

sender: deltlover (postcrossing)
sent from Grand Band (Ontario / Canda), on 25.08.2012
photo: Vanya Sokolowski

No comments:

Post a Comment