Dun Mountain (in the middle distance in the top image) is an unusual bare hill in the Bryant Range, south-east of Nelson city. Dunite rock (bottom) from Dun Mountain is composed almost entirely of interlocking grains of yellowish-green olivine, with tiny black grains of chromite. It weathers to form very infertile soils on which no trees can grow. Where the belt of dunite gives way to other rock types, there is dense forest. About 5,000 tonnes of ore containing copper and chromite were mined at Dun Mountain between 1858 and 1866, but only very small amounts of minerals were present and it was not a paying proposition.
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Reference: CN1191/11 (top); GNS_RC_Dn_09 (bottom)
Photographs by Lloyd Homer (top); Richard Cook (bottom)
Permission of GNS Science must be obtained before any use of this image.