Aviemore lies in the heart of the Grampian mountains of Scotland. These are the exhumed mid-crustal portions of the 500-430 Myr orogen formed through the multiple collision between the Laurentian shield, Baltica and Avalonia that essentially assembled the lithosphere of NW Europe. The geology around Aviemore is dominated by the metamorphosed sedimentary succession that originally formed on the continental margin of Laurentia and has been multiply deformed and intruded by significant granite batholiths. The granites form the semi-Arctic wilderness of the Cairngorms, Scotland’s first national park. Aviemore lies at the gateway to the park and has grown from a small mountain village to become Britain’s premier mountain adventure resort. Aviemore lies on the river Spey, one of Scotland’s major salmon rivers and home to a host of famous distilleries.
The area has a long tradition of geophysical investigation, stretching back to the 18th and early 19th century estimates of the Earth’s mass using gravitational experiments at Schiehalion (60 km from Aviemore) and the associated first integration of gravity measurements with near-surface geological structure. In the 1970s the region was crossed by the LISPB wide angle seismic experiment, which established the crustal structure of the Scottish highlands, along with the rest of Britain. The waters off the North and West coasts of Scotland accommodated the earliest marine seismic reflection experiments geared at imaging lithospheric structure. Through the 1980s it was here that the British Institutions Reflection Profiling Syndicate (BIRPS) acquired first their MOIST and then WINCH, DRUM and GRID datasets.
More information on Aviemore, the Cairngorms and Scotland at: