The geology of the Park provides the physical foundation for the landscape, ecosystems and character of the Wellington Range – the sheer dolerite columns of the Organ Pipes, hidden caverns of Lost World, familiar features of Collins Cap and Collins Bonnet, the band of sandstone beneath the Wellington Range and mudstone waterfalls in the foothills.
Millions of years of geological construction, erosive processes and change have shaped the area to form the landforms we know today.
The Park’s geodiversity (that is the range of geological, landform and hydrological processes and soil types) is highly significant in a number of ways including:
- the scientific value of the high altitude periglacial landforms, the most extensive in the State which have not been affected by glacial processes;
- individual outstanding features e.g. the Lost World ‘pseudo karst’ boulder cave system (including the longest non-carbonate terrestrial caves known in Tasmania), and the Yellow Cliffs (one of the highest and most extensive sandstone cliffs in Tasmania containing rare examples of non–carbonate stalactites and stalagmites);
- the peat soils at Dead Island, the most south–easterly alpine peats in Tasmania; and
- the purity of the water in the Park and its role as habitat.
Non–living components are a vital part of the life sustaining systems within the Park, providing the foundations for other species. More information is available in the Geodiversity Overview. Additionally, there are many individually significant features. Geoconservation management ensures the preservation of these unique natural landforms.
There are various geodiversity research opportunities. For more information contact the Manager.
Listed publications detail further reading on geodiversity in Wellington Park.