We at Preston Street Primary are blessed to have one of the most beautiful and iconic images in all of Scotland on our front door step, Arthur’s Seat. Standing at a height of 250 metres (822 ft), it provides stunning panoramic views of Holyrood Park, Edinburgh and beyond. It also provides us with an excellent opportunity to consolidate some of our new found geological knowledge that we had been learning in class.
Like the castle rock on which Edinburgh Castle is built, Arthur’s Seat was formed by an extinct volcano approximately 350 million years ago. It was then eroded by a glacier exposing rocky crags to the West and leaving a tail of material swept to the East. This is how the Salisbury Crags formed. Arthur’s Seat and the Salisbury Crags helped form the ideas of modern geology under the Godfather of geology, James Hutton. James Hutton observed that the deposition of the sedimentary and formation of the igneous rocks must have occurred at different ages and in different methods. Although we did not get to see Hutton’s Section, we learned that the Salisbury Crags were formed by magma forcing its way sideways through sedimentary rocks to form dolerite sills. Not basalt as we first thought whilst walking underneath them to get to the Rangers office.
We also got to partake in cool experiments that re-enacted the highly pressurised volcanic eruptions that shaped Arthur’s Seat. As you can see from our photos, we had an amazing time, regardless of the weather we encountered.