NZ routes and stops

The North and South Islands of New Zealand are some of the most easily examined, tectonically active and diverse regions on Earth.  The islands are developed along the collisional margin of the Australian and Pacific plates, and exhibit all of the characteristics of this tectonic setting.  Active arc volcanism and geothermal activity, frequent seismicity, regions of crustal uplift and others of subsidence, active glaciation and glacial landforms and products, alpine ranges, basin and range topography, and relatively young epithermal, orogenic and alluvial gold mineralisation. 

A number of sites (see map) have been chosen across both islands which allow the significant and interesting aspects of New Zealand geology to be examined.  Although not strictly a tour, a circuitous route linking the sites would allow the traveller to complete all localities in a period of about 3 weeks.

These sites result from a geological excursion developed by Dr. Nick Cook and Associate Professor Paul Ashley of the University of New England, Armidale.  Paul has run this excursion on a triannual basis over many years, and has developed a peerless knowledge of the geology of this wonderful land.  The descriptions presented here result from Paul’s commentaries and a range of professional papers and other publications and have benefited from his reviews and encouragement.

A number of guides have been prepared for specific areas of the north and south islands.  Use the links below to access these guides.  In addition, a general guide to New Zealand geology is near completion, and will also be available as a separate download.

Because of the large number of sites visited and the significant length of the complete tour, it is broken into 4 guides: 
Download the routes and sites as a single zip file. Unpack the zip file, double click on a kml for a particular tour and it will display the route or sites in Google Earth if installed.

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