On our trip to the west coast of Newfoundland this past weekend, we took a drive to see one of the best-loved sites in the area, the Tablelands.
The Tablelands, found between the towns of Trout River and Woody Point south-west of Gros Morne National Park, look more like a barren desert than traditional Newfoundland.
This is due to the ultramafic rock (high in minerals), peridotite, which makes up the Tablelands. It originated in the Earth’s mantle and was forced up from the depths during a plate collision several hundred million years ago. Peridotite lacks the usual nutrients required to sustain most plant life, hence its barren appearance. Peridotite is high in iron, which accounts for its brownish rust colour.