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The Pamphlet Collection of Sir Robert Stout: Volume 71



At Gore Bay remarkable cliffs, 280ft, in height, formed of hard, dark red conglomerate, containing much iron oxide, extend for three-quarters of a mile along the beach. The cliffs are weathered into fantastic forms, and the streams cut their way back into the hills, leaving lofty pinnacles and ridges that have been termed the "Cathedral Rocks." The gravel of the formation is rounded and dispersed in irregular layers interbedded with sand. It contains no fossils, and is evidently an old river-bed that has been filled up by a deposit similar to the older gravels of the Canterbury Plains, The Stratification of this conglomerate dips eastward, or toward the sea, and this probably indicates the direction in which the ancient river lowed. It was not traced to the westward, as no exposures are there bound, the Port Hills being well covered with grass and soil.

The base of the formation rests quite unconformably in a trough excavated in the grey marl, which will be afterwards mentioned.

Nothing of economic importance is likely to be found in this [unclear: information] except that it affords an unlimited supply of the very best [unclear: Road]-metal, as the ferruginous sand mixed with the gravel will cause [unclear: it] to bind strongly under traffic. In conglomerates of the same age [unclear: in] other parts of New Zealand, beds of pure hydrous haematite are [unclear: round], and used as iron-ores, and the same may be yet found in this district.