Mountain Rock Exposure

By William T. Hathaway

White Oak Mountain Rock Exposure

Back in 1979 I visited the road cut across White Oak Mountain (see map) which exposed a marvelous site for the study of Triassic age rocks. When traveling north from Danville toward Chatham along U.S. 29, the rock formation would be on your left. Today the site is almost entirely covered with tall grasses and scrubby shrubs.

Several years ago a geology professor visited the site with his geology students as I happened to be passing by. My short conversation with the professor included discussion of the somewhat rare arkosic sandstone found at the north lower end of the exposure. Arkosic sandstones resemble granite, and it is often mistaken for granite — an unlikely find at this sedimentary site. Students were primarily interested in the indurated (hardened) siltstones, sandstones, and conglomerates found at the location.