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Me2 Djerriwarrh Creek cutting - Ordovician and Volcanics

This information has been developed from the publications:

  • Sites of Geological and Geomorphological Significance in the Western Region of Melbourne (1986) by Neville Rosengren
  • Sites of Geological and Geomorphological Significance on the Coast of Port Phillip Bay (1988) by Neville Rosengren.
  • Sites of Geological and Geomorphological Significance in the Shire of Otway (1984) by Neville Rosengren.
Geological heritage sites, including sites of geomorphological interest and volcanic heritage sites, are under regular revision by the Geological Society of Australia, especially in the assessment of significance and values. Reference should be made to the most recent reports. See the Earth Science Heritage section of the Geological Society of Australia website (external link) for details of geological heritage reports, and a bibliography.

LocationMelton - 810258. Shire of Melton. Cutting on northern side of Western Freeway, 4 km w of Melton.


Western Freeway.


Crown land.

Site Description

The cutting exposes Lower Ordovician shales overlain in turn by Werribee Formation sediments and Newer Volcanics basalts. At the western end of the cutting is a tight anticlinal fold in the Ordovician shales and 80 m further east a synclinal fold. Three metres of weathered Tertiary clays and sands overlie the Ordovician bedrock in the middle of the cutting while at the eastern end the Tertiary is covered by a weathered lava flow. A structure that has the appearance of a small reverse fault in the Tertiary causes a kink in the base of the lava flow at that point.


State. This is the best example noted in the study area of a clear exposure of Palaeozoic rocks overlaid by Tertiary sediments and younger lava flows. The site is a rare exposure of the bedrocks that underlie the volcanic plain and provides an excellent summary of the basaltic stratigraphic sequence that occurs in the area between Melbourne, Bacchus Marsh and Geelong.


Class 2. Road maintenance and improvements threaten the site. Part of the section is now artificially stabilized to prevent slumping on to the roadway. It is important that the road management authorities consult with geologists to determine the most practical means of maintaining the exposures consistent with traffic safety. The informal parking area on the south of the roadway opposite the cutting should be improved to allow safe viewing access from that side. It is impractical to carry out detailed inspection because of the immediate proximity of the cutting to the carriageway.


Joyce, E.B. and King, R.L. (1980).
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