The rocks of the Copper Coast recorded different geological events over 460 millions years. It all started on the ocean floor, near the South Pole, when this part of Ireland wasn't a land yet. Magma rose from the depths of the earth to finally pierce the ocean floor. A first volcano erupted in the ocean. When it switched off, the sea became quiet again allowing shellfish to develop.
A second volcano, more explosive than the first one, erupted and disturbed the sea. It then switched off and the Copper Coast started to drift northwards, towards the Equator. While drifting, the rocks previously formed were uplifted during mountain forming processes and then exposed to the surface to desert conditions about 360 million years ago.
The Copper Coast kept on drifting to reach its actual position.
About 2 million years ago, ice sheets and glaciers covered the land and while moving slowly, eroded the rocks underneath and shaped the landscape. When they melted at the end of the Ice Age, about 12,000 years ago, the glaciers dumped their load of boulder rich clays, topping the underneath bedrock.
In Geoparks we maintain a watching brief on all things to do with our environment, but particularly our geology.
We do ask that you only take away your memories and photos, and that you don't remove any fossils, rocks or minerals.
Our local authority, Waterford Council, also maintain a protective role with regard to geological wear and tear, both caused by nature and man. Click here...