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RE: Laterite

Robert H is still on his quest...

>Ok guys, I realize my quest is a personal one and I dont expect anybody
>else to have any interest. But three people said there was prehistoric
>laterite in North America. So all I ask is that you give me the name of
>a location, a state, a city, a county, a province, anything! It shouldnt
>be that difficult for you.
>perhaps you could tell me the largest university in British Columbia. If
>the education system in Canada is even only half what it is in the USA,
>their geological research department ought to know if there is any
>laterite in their own back yard. Dont you think?  Just a name, thats all
>I need.

Don't sound so desperate Robert! <g> First of all, get yourself a better
atlas. I live in Toronto, over a thousand miles from British Columbia
(Canada is a _very_ big country). But the largest university in B.C. is the
University of British Columbia, in Vancouver. Any web search bot can give
you the URL for their website. I doubt however that there would be laterite
in B.C., given the geography of the place (mountains THAT big and rugged
indicate a very young area, geologically speaking). A good source for
information on Ontario's physical geography is Ryerson University here in
Toronto. They teach Physical Geography and should be able to tell you if
there are any lateritic soil deposits in Ontario. A lot of northern Ontario
is part of the Canadian Shield, an area of bedrock that is billions of years
old (some of the oldest rocks on the planet, if I'm not mistaken). Again,
consult a web search bot for the URL. As for eastern Canada, well, as I said
in an earlier post, it's geologic history indicates that the whole area was
located far to the south, and was hot and moist for millennia, not exactly
the conditions I would expect for the formation of laterite. The soil in
Prince Edward Island is certainly red, but it is also very fertile (they
grow the best potato's in the world there). Quebec has extensive deposits of
bauxite, but while related to laterite, it isn't suitable for an aquarium
substrate. I don't know anything about the geology of the Prairie provinces,
or of the far north.

My comments about there quite possibly being laterite sources in North
America were not meant as indicating that I knew exactly where those
deposits were located. I was addressing your contention that it was found
only in tropical locations. I merely pointed out to you that climates change
over millennia, and what is cold and moist now may once have been much
warmer and drier. Substrate Gold is supposed to be mined in the United
States. Nobody has ever questioned the fact that the material is truly a
laterite (it is apparently slightly different in composition than Duplarit
but that is not surprising).

Roger Miller posted an excellent treatment of laterite just the other day,
in response to your original request. I have to plead guilty to having in
the past referred to laterite as "clay" but as Roger pointed out, it is fine
grained only to the extent that someone ground it up. Most clays are almost
colloidal in nature when in solution.

While I sympathize with your inability to deal with the size of the
archives, it really does pay to go over them with a fine toothed comb when
looking for information about a topic you are unfamiliar with. As Roger
noted and both Christopher and I demonstrated, some people can get "antsy"
when we feel that the archives weren't consulted first. I apologize if I was
brusque in my earlier post to you.

You also made a comment about how some "lurkers" are afraid of ridicule,
should they post something to the list. First of all, from my point of view,
there is no such thing as a stupid question. Secondly, not everyone here has
been around for as long as a lot of the more vocal list members. Sometimes,
in order to learn, you have to admit your ignorance of a subject. I can
recall many occasions when I was taken down a peg or two on the list because
something I wrote was wrong. Big deal, I survived, and learned something in
the process.

James Purchase