Overview of Geology of the Humber River
River systems in North America generally are subject to the physical forces of nature including erosion. The Humber River of Southern Ontario is no exception. In addition, the origin of most river systems owes homage to historical geological events including plate tectonics, oceanic depositional events and glaciation.
The geology of the watershed generally consists of Quaternary sediments infilling an ancient fluvial valley system incised into the bedrock surface.
This bedrock valley system drained the Upper Great Lakes basin into what is now the St. Lawrence River.
There are four main geologic features present, including:
* A bedrock valley system that contains thick sand and gravel deposits (Georgian Bay Formation-Ordivician)
* The Niagara Escarpment that forms the western boundary of the Humber River watershed (Silurian Cuesta)
* The Oak Ridges Moraine (ORM) that forms the headwater of the Humber Watershed (Wisconsonian Glaciation Period)
* Areas where Quaternary sediments have eroded and largely in-filled with sequences of sand and silt. This erosive action is attributed to tunnel channel formation
beneath glacial ice
(abst: Humber River State of the Watershed Reports, TRCA 2008).
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