GeoDienst


The "Petrified Forest of Khorixas" - a natural monument in Namibia

 

The area of the "Petrified Forest of Khorixas" is taken from sediments of the Dwyka Series of the Karroo system (Permo-Carboniferous). It is a brownish, coarse-grained to conglomeratic sandstone, which consists mostly of well-rounded quartz grains.

This sandstone horizon holds up to 40 m long silicified wood logs. The wood can be assigned to the collective genus Dadoxylon. The ground is littered in places with log fragments of all sizes. The deposit was extensively edited by R. Kräusel (1956).

Now under strict protection the approximately 65-acre area is located about 45 km west Khorixas (formerly Welwitschia) immediately north of the road to Torrabai in the southern Kaokoveld. It is the largest deposit of silicified woods in southern Africa. Known is the occurrence since the forties of last century.

 


Entrance to the "Petrified Forest"

View over the area of the "Petrified Forest". The heights in the background are essentially formed by Karroo dolerites.



Geological section

Stratigraphy

nearly 40 m long log

Karoo Brown Sandstone





Silicified wood in a ultrathin section - clearly recognizable growth lines

Landscape during the Karoo-System - in the background a forest of Dadoxylon - from:Schaarschmidt, 1968.

The Autor sitting on a silicified log - on the left side Welwitschia mirabilis


 

Literature:

Kräusel, R. (1956): Der "versteinerte Wald" im Kaokoveld, Südwestafrika. - Senck. leth. 37: 411 - 426, 4 Abb., 6 Taf., Frankfurt am Main.

Schaarschmidt, F. (1968): Paläobotanik I. - B-I-Hochschultaschenbücher 357/357a: 107 S., 61Abb.; 6 Taf., 3 Tab.; Bibliographisches Institut Mannheim.

Schneider, G. (2004): The Roadside Geology of Namibia. - Sammlung Geologischer Führer 97: 294 S., 112 Abb., 1 Taf. Im Text; Gebrüder Bornträger, Berlin Stuttgart.

 

Details of Geography und Geology of Namibia can be found (in German):

Geographischer Abriß Namibiens

Grundzüge der Geologie von Namibien.

 

Namibia in the World Wide Web:

Geological Survey of Namibia

Namibia Scientific Society

 

Do you have suggestions or questions - write to : africanus@geodienst.de.

 

05.03.2013 22:52:53