Talks and tours

Graeme, mobile:
+27 84 245 2490
Karen, mobile:
+27 82 475 8767
Tel/fax: +27 56 8181814
Based at Otters' Haunt, Kopjeskraal Road, opposite Parys, North West Province, South Africa

The Dome is so big it can only be seen from space - as in the image here (false colour highlighting the features). Come to our Vredefort Dome information centre to learn all about the mightiest asteroid impact of them all. The Unesco World Heritage Site draws tourists, school and student groups, scientists and adventurers. We are 2km from the town of Parys, on the Vaal River in central South Africa. Get hold of us to arrange your visit and plan a tour to suit your interests - from geology to battlefields, from driving and hiking to cycling and rafting.
Stay at Otters' Haunt Wonderful riverside accommodation in the Dome with direct access to many sites of interest.

How the Dome impact saved SA’s gold

An excellent write-up to be found here explains, in detail, the origins of the Witwatersrand and in particular the phenomenon of gold deposits in the Reef.

[The] event that had a major impact on the geology of the Witwatersrand Supergroup and its exposure in the Johannesburg region, was a massive meteor impact 110 km (68 mi) to the southwest of Johannesburg 2.02 billion years ago. The epicenter of the impact was close to the present village of Vredefort, which has given its name to the geological remnant of this immense event: the Vredefort Dome. Not only are the remains of this impact the second oldest on earth, but it is also the largest meteor impact that has left its imprint on the earth’s geology of today. A meteor 10–15 km (6–9 mi) across created a 300 km (190 mi) diameter crater, distorting all the rock strata within that circle. Johannesburg is just within the outer edge of this impact crater…

The meteor impact…lowered the Witwatersrand rocks within the crater. This protected them from erosion later on; but, possibly more importantly, bringing them to the surface close to the crater rim, near Johannesburg…

Thus, it is possible that if it had not been for the Vredefort meteor strike 2 billion years ago, we would either have never discovered the rich gold deposits beneath the Southern African surface, or they would have been eroded away during the extensive removal of the surface of the Southern African Plateau during the past 150 million, and more especially during the past 20 million years.

Go to the full article.




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