Altamaha Formation Outcrop, Jeff Davis County

Altamaha Grit Sandstone Outcrop Middle Miocene Flat Tub Broxton Rocks Jeff Davis County GA Photograph Copyright Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2015

If you’ve ever traveled Georgia Highway 107 between Jacksonville and Snipesville, you’ve undoubtedly noticed these large outcrops near the Coffee/Jeff Davis County line. They’re an extension of the better-known Broxton Rocks, a natural area protected by the Nature Conservancy of Georgia. The area, known as Flat Tub,  is accessible as a Georgia Wildlife Management Area (WMA) and recent covenants have led to further protections of this fascinating resource.

Altamaha Grit Sandstone Outcrop Middle Miocene Flat Tub Jeff Davis County GA Photograph Copyright Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2015

Long thought to be Altamaha Grit, different hypotheses suggest that it could be of Altamaha Formation, but not as “gritty” as other such areas previously identified. Another thesis suggests this may be a more specific “Ocmulgee Formation”, the result of a meteorite impact which may have created the Big Bend of the Ocmulgee.

Flat Tub Altamaha Grit Sandstone Outcrop Middle Miocene Wildflowers Jeff Davis County GA Natural Area Photograph Copyright Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2015

Whatever the specific geology, it’s certainly an amazing environment, almost alien in comparison to adjacent lands.

Altamaha Grit Sandstone Outcrop Middle Miocene Flat Tub Wildflowers Jeff Davis County GA Photograph Copyright Brian Brown Vanishing South Georgia USA 2015

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8 Comments

Filed under --JEFF DAVIS COUNTY GA--

8 responses to “Altamaha Formation Outcrop, Jeff Davis County

  1. Jim Sewell

    The Nature Conservancy does guided tours of the Broxton Rocks preserve several times each year. They intentionally keep it limited to preserve the many unique plant specimens found in the area. More info about can be found here: http://www.nature.org/ourinitiatives/regions/northamerica/unitedstates/georgia/placesweprotect/broxton-rocks.xml

  2. Jesse M. Bookhardt

    Brian,
    I am glad you have shown these pictures. I grew up in Snipesville, and “The Rocks” was a wonderful place of mystery. Such geology is not what you expect to see deep in South Georgia. As a kid, I visited the area several times exploring the unusual formations. I think that there is much more to learn about these craggy stately monuments of nature. No one has yet really done much research on the geology and origin of these structures. I eagerly await more information. Our universities need to get busy and do more research.
    Another thing that the public should know is that the environment there supports some rather strange plants that grow on and around the rocks. As a boy, I was fascinated to see them. I hope that they have not been destroyed. Anyone with just a little imagination can visit the site and visualize what the place must have looked like before the Longleaf Pines were cut and there existed a virgin forest with large trees and an open floor covered with Wiregrass. As a young guy, I often heard local stories of how during the Civil War deserters from the Confederate forces hid in the area.
    I am pleased that the site is protected. Our Georgia is a diverse beautiful state with an ocean, mountains, valleys, hills, flat lands, swamps, rivers, and more. The Rocks contribute to that unique diversity.

  3. Jason

    thank you so much, you are a welspring of information.

  4. Wendell Theus

    HI BRIAN, DON’T THINK I HAVE BEEN FAR ENOUGH THRU JACKSONVILLE TO SEE THIS. I KNOW ABOUT HORSE CREEK WMA– IS THIS PART OF THAT AREA? REALLY GREAT PICS. HAVE YOU BEEN INTO HORSE CREEK TO SEE MONTGOMERY LAKE-WHERE GEORGE PERRY CAUGHT THE LO NG-STANDING WORLDS RECORD LARGEMOUTH BASS? 23 LBS. 4 OZ. I BELIEVE. THIS “LAKE” MUST HAVE BEEN MUCH DIFFERENT THEN-1932. TODAY IT IS WHAT WE WOULD CALL A MUD SLOUGH. THANKS AS ALWAYS FOR YOUR ENDEAVORS.

  5. Jason

    Thank you for sharing this. Years ago i wanted to visit this but from what I found out, it was owned by the nature conservancy and there wasn’t access to it. Is there public access to the area? Its been on my list of natural areas to visit for a long time. Did you drive through Lax? I used to make that drive across Georgia when driving from Statesboro to Thomas county to see my grandparents. I always enjoyed it.

    • Jason, this is publicly accessible on Highway 107. It’s located a few miles from Snipesville. You can park on the side of the road and walk over to the rocks and there’s also a WMA entrance nearby. Be careful if you park beside the road as it’s a rural highway and people drive fast through here. Lots of log trucks, of course! And yes, I have been through Lax many times. One of my best friends lives there.

  6. Fascinating article and photos. Have never seen this site but heard of it. Have lived near the Altamaha for many years. Thanks.

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