The exposed rocks of Calderdale belong to the Upper Carboniferous period of the geological time scale. They are sandstone and shale, sedimentary rocks that were deposited in a delta supplied with sediment from mountains to the north (in present day Scotland and Scandinavia).
At the time Calderdale was located just south of the equator, and was a small part of a huge landmass. The tropical conditions led to the growth of very large forests with tall trees that eventually formed the coal deposits that have been mined over the past several hundred years.
All rocks contain information that can be used to describe the environment in which the rocks were formed, no matter where that was. Anyone with an interest in learning the techniques and patience to practice will find the effort worthwhile. The best way to study rocks is to look at them.
There are many places in Calderdale to study the rocks in quarries and cloughs. Although they might look similar from place to place, each outcrop can be special in its own right and tell its own particular story.
On field visits around Calderdale, we can spend some time thinking about the rocks we see and walk on, as well as the broader landscape. We can try to connect the rocks and landscape to the flora and fauna that we see.
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