Geologische Rundschau

, Volume 85, Issue 4, pp 683–704 | Cite as

Reconnaissance geology in Upper Chitral, Baroghil and Karambar districts (northern Karakorum, Pakistan)

  • Maurizio GaetaniEmail author
  • Lucia Angiolini
  • Alda Nicora
  • Dario Sciunnach
  • Patrick Le Fort
  • Seifnullah Tanoli
  • Asif Khan
Original Paper


During the summer of 1992 a geological expedition crossed the northern Karakorum range in northern Pakistan, from the Chitral to Karambar valleys, from the villages of Mastuj to Imit. Some of the areas visited were geologically unknown. A number of structural units were crossed, belonging to the Karakorum block or to other crustal blocks north of it. They are: (a) the axial batholith, in which three plutonic bodies have been identified, and (b) the northern sedimentary belt (NSB), in which three major tectonostratigraphic units form thrust stacks dipping to the north. Their internal stratigraphy and structural style are partly different. The most complete contains a crystalline basement, transgressed by a marine succession during the Early Ordovician. The youngest strata are represented by the Reshun conglomerate, of inferred Cretaceous age. The northernmost unit of the NSB is tightly folded, whereas the central one forms a monocline. Vertical faults, mainly strike-slip, dissect the thrusted slabs. Metamorphic deformation is absent or reaches only the anchizone in the studied sector of the Karakorum NSB. To the north of the Karakorum proper there are several other tectonic units, separated by vertical faults. They are, from south to north: (a) the Taš Kupruk zone, with metavolcanics of basaltic to latibasaltic composition; (b) the Atark unit, mostly consisting of massive carbonate rocks of Mesozoic age; and (c) the Wakhan slates which consist of a thick widespread succession of dark slates, metasiltites and sandstones. The fine-grained elastic rocks are supposed to be Palaeozoic to Early Triassic in age. The Wakhan slates are intruded by plutons belonging to the East Hindu Kush batholith, from which a single K/Ar age on muscovite gave a Jurassic age.

Key words

General geology Stratigraphy Magmatism Volcanism Structure Karakorum Central Asia Pakistan 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1996

Authors and Affiliations

  • Maurizio Gaetani
    • 1
    Email author
  • Lucia Angiolini
    • 1
  • Alda Nicora
    • 1
  • Dario Sciunnach
    • 1
  • Patrick Le Fort
    • 2
  • Seifnullah Tanoli
    • 3
  • Asif Khan
    • 3
  1. 1.Dipartimento di Scienze delta TerraUniversità di MilanoMilanItaly
  2. 2.LGCA-UPRES-A No. 5025 CNRSUniversité FourierGrenobleFrance
  3. 3.Centre of Excellence in Geology and University of PeshawarPeshawarPakistan

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