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The AAPG/Datapages Combined Publications Database

CSPG Special Publications


Sequences, Stratigraphy, Sedimentology: Surface and Subsurface — Memoir 15, 1988
Pages 291-306

Facies Interpretation of the Ben Nevis Formation in the North Ben Nevis M-61 Well, Jeanne D’Arc Basin, Grand Banks, Newfoundland

Steve Harding


The cored interval from the Ben Nevis Formation in the North Ben Nevis M-61 well of the Jeanne d’Arc Basin, documents a progradational shallowing-upward marine succession (Facies Association 1) which grades into a protected back barrier lagoon/marsh succession (Facies Association 2). Integration of both the biological and sedimentological characteristics of these lithologies enables many of the subenvironments within the two facies associations to be identified.

Progressing upsection, Facies Association 1 begins with an interbedded, very fine grained sandstone and mudstone facies with sandstones amalgamating and coarsening upward. Stratification is poorly developed within the lower interval but, where evident, is parallel to very low-angle crossbedded, which in some units may be interpreted as hummocky cross-stratification. This interval is abruptly overlain by a predominantly trough crossbedded, medium grained sandstone facies, containing several fining-upward sub-cycles. Additional features noted within these sandstones are planar tabular crossbeds, graded foresets and mud couplets. The lowermost interval of Facies Association 1 is interpreted as the shoreward edge of the offshore/shoreface transition. Continuing upward through the succession, sandstone amalgamation and the coarsening of sediment indicate progression up the shoreface. The trough crossbedded sandstones of a barrier inlet complex erosionally overlie this shoreface facies. Fining-upward subcycles within inlet fill deposits depict smaller channel facies deposited as a component of the overall complex.

Resting on the underlying succession are the lithologically diverse units of Facies Association 2. Sandstone, siltstone and mudstone containing abundant carbonaceous material characterize this facies association. Rooted zones and dense macrofossil assemblages are also noteworthy facies characteristics of the upper lithologies. Facies Association 2 possesses lithotypes affiliated with back barrier sedimentation. The following facies can be identified from this depositional succession: lagoon, washover, sand flat, tidal channel/creek, marsh/paleosol, and crevasse/day-fill. The deposition of these facies occurred adjacent to a storm and wave dominated microtidal coastline.

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