Garibaldi Volcanic Belt

Garibaldi Volcanic Belt

The Garibaldi Volcanic Belt is a north-south range of volcanoes in southwestern British Columbia, Canada. It is the northern extension of the Cascade Volcanic Arc, a chain of volcanoes of major andesitic to dacitic stratovolcanoes extending northward from northern California to British Columbia and contains the most explosive young volcanoes in Canada. The Garibaldi Volcanic Belt includes the Bridge River Cones, Mount Cayley, Mount Fee, Mount Garibaldi, Mount Price, Mount Meager and the Squamish Volcanic Field.


Eruption styles in the Garibaldi Volcanic Belt range from effusive to explosive, with compositions from basalt to rhyolite. Morphologically, centers include calderas, cinder cones, stratovolcanoes and small isolated lava masses. Due to repeated continental and alpine glaciations, many of the volcanic deposits in the belt reflect complex interactions between magma composition, topography, and changing ice configurations.

Mount Meager is the most unstable volcanic massif in Canada. It has dumped clay and rock several meters deep into the Pemberton Valley at least three times during the past 7,300 years. Recent drilling into the Pemberton Valley bed encountered remnants of a debris flow that had travelled 50 kilometers from the volcano shortly before it last erupted 2350 years ago. About 1,000,000,000 m³ of rock and sand extended over the width of the valley. Two previous debris flows, about 4,450 and 7,300 years ago, sent debris at least 32 kilometers from the volcano. Recently, the volcano has created smaller landslides about every ten years, including one in 1975 that killed four geologists near Meager Creek. The possibility of Mount Meager covering stable sections of the Pemberton Valley in a debris flow is estimated at about one in 2400 years. There is no sign of volcanic activity with these events. However scientists warn the volcano could release another massive debris flow over populated areas anytime without warning.

Volcanoes of the Garibaldi Volcanic Belt have been sporadically active over a time span of several millions of years. The most recently documented eruption was the 2350 BP eruption of Mount Meager. This eruption may have been close in size to that of the May 18, 1980 eruption of Mount St. Helens. Ash from this eruption can be traced eastward to western Alberta. Hot springs in the vicinity of Mount Cayley and Mount Meager suggest that magmatic heat is still present. The long history of volcanism in the region, coupled with continued subduction off the coast, suggests that volcanism has not yet ended in the Garibaldi Volcanic Belt. Long repose periods, up to several thousand years, between major explosive events at the major volcanoes (Mounts Meager, Cayley and Garibaldi), appears to typify the Garibaldi Volcanic Belt.

Young dikes in the Squamish-Garibaldi area show a strong north-northwest to north-northeast trend. Ages of these dikes are not well constrained but they are probably mainly Miocene and younger; at least some are related to Garibaldi volcanism.

The Garibaldi Volcanic Belt contains two extra volcanic fields, the Franklin Glacier Volcano and the Silverthrone Caldera, which lie 140 and 190 kilometres northwest of the main volcanic belt. These volcanoes are originally part of the eroded Miocene Pemberton Volcanic Belt.

The Chilcotin Plateau Basalts east of the Garibaldi Volcanic Belt, is thought to have formed as a result of extension of the crust behind the Cascadia subduction zone.

Cascadia subduction zone

The Garibaldi Volcanic Belt was formed by subduction of the Juan de Fuca Plate and the Explorer plates (remnants of the much larger Farallon Plate) under the North American Plate along the Cascadia subduction zone. This is a 680 mi (1,094 km) long fault, running 50 mi (80 km) off the west-coast of the Pacific Northwest from northern California to Vancouver Island, British Columbia. The plates move at a relative rate of over 0.4 inches (10 mm) per year at a somewhat oblique angle to the subduction zone.

Unlike most subduction zones worldwide, there is no oceanic trench present along the continental margin in Cascadia. Instead, terranes and the accretionary wedge have been uplifted to form a series of coastal ranges and exotic mountains. A high rate of sedimentation from the outflow of the three major rivers (Fraser River, Columbia River, and Klamath River) which cross the Cascade Range contributes to further obscuring the presence of a trench. However, in common with most other subduction zones, the outer margin is slowly being compressed, similar to a giant spring. When the stored energy is suddenly released by slippage across the fault at irregular intervals, the Cascadia subduction zone can create very large earthquakes such as the magnitude 9 Cascadia earthquake of 1700.


First Nations people have inhabited the area for thousands of years and developed their own myths and legends concerning the Cascade volcanoes. According to some of these tales, Mount Garibaldi was used as refuge from a great flood.

Hot springs in the Canadian side of the arc, were originally used and revered by First Nations people. The springs located on Meager Creek are called "Teiq" [ [ Mount Meager] in the Canadian Mountain Encyclopedia. Retrieved on 2007-10-16] in the language of the Lillooet River and were the farthest up the Lillooet River the spirit-beings/wizards known as "the Transformers" reached during their journey into the Lillooet Country, and a "training" place for young First Nations men who would privite themselves at the springs to acquire power and knowledge. In this area, also, was found the blackstone chief's head pipe that is famous of Lillooet artifacts; found buried in volcanic ash, one supposes from the 2350 BP eruption of Mount Meager.

Volcanics of the Garibaldi Volcanic Belt were first discovered and mapped in 1911.


The volcanoes within the belt include (in approximately south-north order):

*Watts Point volcanic centre

*The Castle

*Mount Garibaldi
**Opal Cone
**Atwell Peak
*Garibaldi Lake Volcanic Field
**The Table
**Mount Price
**Clinker Peak
**Black Tusk
**Cinder Cone

*Mount Cayley
**Mount Fee
**Brandywine Mountain
**Pyroclastic Peak
**Vulcan's Thumb
**Powder Mountain
**Mount Brew
**Little Ring Peak
**Pali Dome
**Cauldron Dome
**Crucible Dome
**Ring Mountain
**Ember Ridge
**Slag Hill
**Cheakamus Valley Vent

*Mount Meager
**Plinth Peak
**Pylon Peak
**Mount Job
**Devastator Peak
**Capricorn Mountain
***Perkin's Pillar

*Bridge River Cones
**Nichols Valley Flows
**Sham Hill
**Tuber Hill
**Tuber Hill East
**Salal Glacier

*Franklin Glacier Volcano

*Silverthrone Caldera
**Mount Silverthrone
**Machmel River Cone
**Charnaud Creek
**Trudel Creek

ee also

*Cascade Volcanoes
*Anahim Volcanic Belt
*Northern Cordilleran Volcanic Province
*Wrangell Volcanic Field
*Chilcotin Plateau Basalts
*Wells Gray-Clearwater volcanic field
*Garibaldi Lake Volcanic Field
*Volcanism in Canada
*List of volcanoes in Canada
*Geology of the Pacific Northwest


External links

* [ National Resources Canada]

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Volcanic belt — [ Trans Mexican Volcanic Belt in Mexico ] A volcanic belt is a large volcanically active region. Other terms are used for smaller areas of activity, such as volcanic fields. Volcanic belts are found above zones of unusually high temperature (700… …   Wikipedia

  • Pemberton Volcanic Belt — The Pemberton Volcanic Belt is an eroded Miocene volcanic belt at a low angle near Mount Meager, British Columbia, Canada. The Garibaldi and Pemberton volcanic belts appear to merge into a single belt, although the Pemberton is older then the… …   Wikipedia

  • Anahim Volcanic Belt — The Anahim Volcanic Belt is a 600 kilometre long volcanic belt, stretching from just north of Vancouver Island to near Quesnel, British Columbia, Canada. The Anahim Volcanic Belt has had three main magmatic episodes: 15–13 Ma, 9–6 Ma, and 3–1 Ma …   Wikipedia

  • Garibaldi (disambiguation) — Garibaldi may refer to: People * Giuseppe Garibaldi, Italian revolutionary * Anita Garibaldi, Giuseppe Garibaldi s wife * Giuseppe Garibaldi Jr., Giuseppe Garibaldi s son who fought in the Mexican Revolution of 1910 * Giuseppe Garibaldi II,… …   Wikipedia

  • Garibaldi, British Columbia — Garibaldi, originally named Daisy Lake and also known as Garibaldi Lodge and Garibaldi Townsite, is an abandoned locality on the Cheakamus River, around its confluence with Rubble Creek, and just south of Daisy Lake. Although some buildings… …   Wikipedia

  • Garibaldi Lake Volcanic Field — Infobox Mountain Name=Garibaldi Lake Volcanic Field Photo= MtGaribaldi NorthFace TheTable.jpg Caption= The north face of Mount Garibaldi rises above The Table and Garibaldi Lake Elevation=convert|2316|m|ft|0 Location=British Columbia, Canada… …   Wikipedia

  • Garibaldi Lake — Infobox lake lake name = Garibaldi Lake image lake = GaribaldiLake PanoramaRidge.jpg caption lake = Garibaldi Lake and the north face of Mount Garibaldi, looking south from Panorama Ridge at 6,900 ft (2,100 m). image bathymetry = caption… …   Wikipedia

  • Garibaldi Provincial Park — Infobox protected area | name = Garibaldi Provincial Park iucn category = II caption = Garibaldi Lake and the Battleship Islands locator x = locator y = location = British Columbia, Canada nearest city = Squamish, British Columbia lat degrees =… …   Wikipedia

  • Mount Garibaldi — as seen from Squamish Elevation 2,678 m (8,786 ft)  …   Wikipedia

  • Mount Cayley volcanic field — Coordinates: 50°07′13″N 123°17′26″W / 50.12028°N 123.29056°W / 50.12028; 123.29056 …   Wikipedia