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ABSTRACT

Glacigenic sediments exposed in pits around Villeneuve, near Edmonton, Alberta, are subdivided into facies based on grain size, sedimentary structure, glacially-induced deformation and faulting, and groove marks. Two diamicton facies are recognised, one of which is interpreted as a primary till, deposited directly from glacier ice, and the other as a product of mass-movement. The diamicton facies are closely associated with current bedded facies interpreted as fluvioglacial deposits. The stratigraphic sedimentological and tectonic aspects of these fluvial deposits suggest subglacial deposition in channels and cavities. At any one place the glacier appears to have alternated between being attached to the bed, causing thrusting and sole marking, and being separated from the bed by a cavity in which fluvial and mass-movement sediments accumulated. The net result is a highly complex and laterally variable stratigraphy produced by a single glacial advance. The correct interpretation of such sequences is essential if lithostratigraphy is to be used to establish glacial history. In addition, the interpretations presented here have implications regarding the formation of soft zones in ‘till’. They indicate that the soft zones are beds of sorted sediment redeposited by mass-movement.