Sooke bluffs provide glimpse into history

Geologists look at 100,000 year old formations

  • Feb. 23, 2011 9:00 a.m.

Led by professor Olav Lian, 18 students from the University of the Fraser Valley (campuses in Abbotsford, Chilliwack and Mission) make their way to what has been referred to as somewhat of an oddity.

The party had made the trip for an inspection of the Sooke Bluffs near Muir Point on February 19 and the weather greeting them could not have been better.

Many vertical metres of exposed bluff provide geological experts with a clear snapshot of the history of the formation and scholars have been coming to study them since the 1960s.

D.J. Huntley of Simon Fraser University had visited the site in 1996, and later stated:

“We are convinced that the lower organic-rich sediments were deposited during the last period when the land was as warm as it is now at about 100,000 years ago.”

In a thank you letter to locals who had provided access to the site, Huntley further stated, “You reside on a rare piece of our landscape; the glaciers wiped most of B.C. clean during the last ice age, but missed your place.

Lian, left, is mostly obscured by foliage after scaling the slope to point out features of interest to the class.

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