Local Wits Geology (Central Rand) - Geology, mining, history and environment Tour

Taking place on: 31 August 2014

The uppermost Elsburg conglomerate and associated southward dipping quartzite overlain by the Ventersdorp lava forming the Klipriversberg range to the south.

In the  valley the historic (1893) red roofed mansion of Johannes Petrus Meyer, after whom Johannesburg was reputedly named, is seen.

The tour aims to present a brief introduction to some of the important geological features of the unique Witwatersrand plateau of the Johannesburg area. It also includes an introduction to the early gold mining history of the Reef and incorporates aspects of the history of early Johannesburg. Environmental impacts of 127 years of mining will also be viewed.

Features such as the Orange Grove Quartzite ridge forming the base of the Witwatersrand sedimentary basin and the northern edge of the plateau are viewed. The banded, magnetic iron formation known as the Contorted Bed is examined and the importance of the latter in tracing the Witwatersrand sediments below younger cover will be outlined.

A number of the iconic auriferous conglomerate reef horizons will be seen including the discovery site of the Main Reef and Main Reef Leader conglomerates at  Langlaagte. The historic Ferreira stope on the Main Reef Leader, Ferreiras Dorp (site of the first gold mining camp-Ferreiras camp) will also be visited.  The uppermost (Elsburg) conglomerates and quartzites forming the southern edge of the Witwatersrand Plateau will be examined. These are overlain by the Ventersdorp lava forming the Kliprviersberg range south of Johannesburg.

A  number of iconic buildings associated with early Johannesburg will be seen. The part played by the Randlords in developing some of the early Central Rand mines such a Robinson deep will be covered including the history of one of  the greatest Witwatersrand mines-Crown mines. Several of the mansions of the Randlords situated on Parktown ridge will be viewed and a colourful history recounted.

Re – processing of the tailings dams will be viewed on Crown mines, CMR and Village Main where the origins and consequences of environmental impacts of Witwatersrand mining on air (dust pollution) and river (water pollution) will also be seen and discussed.

Cost:  R 750-00 per person

Cost Includes:

  • Transport
  • Packed Lunch
  • Refreshments

Min number of participants:              10          
Max number of participants:             35

Terms and Conditions:

1. Participation will be confirmed on receipt of payment.

2. Preference will be given to registered IMA delegates and accompanying persons.

3. All cancellations must be received in writing and sent to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

4. Cancellations received before 30 June 2014 will receive a full refund less a 10% administration fee.

5. Cancellations received between 1 July and 15 August 2014 will receive a 50% refund.

6. No refunds will be issued for cancellations received after 15 August 2014.

7. Refunds are subject to the approval of and at the discretion of the organising committee.

8. The organising committee reserves the right to change or cancel this tour.