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Prehistoric Kauri Forest, New ZealandNot all petrified wood is stone, and the process of petrification is anything but instant. Take New Zealand’s Prehistoric Kauri Forest as an example. Kauri trees – many of them huge, exceptionally wide specimens – grew in a swampy part of New Zealand’s North Island tens of thousands of years ago, and most of those designated as “Ancient Kauri” have been buried for up to 45,000 years. They’re partially petrified, and considered to be “the oldest workable wood in the world.”The largest Ancient Kauri log extracted from the ground measured 75 feet (23 meters) long, 37 feet (11.3 meters) wide and weighed in at a staggering 140 tons. Examination of the tree’s growth rings determined that it was 1,087 years old when it died. Part of the log was turned into a unique spiral staircase that can be seen at the showroom and retail outlet of Ancient Kauri Kingdom in Awanui, New Zealand.
The remains of a fossil forest are buried within a sedimentary sequence of Eocene age (approximately 50 million years old) near Strathcona Fiord, Ellesmere Island. Large petrified tree stumps are preserved in their original growth positions in coals of the Eureka Sound Group, a sequence of sandstones, siltstones and coals deposited in a delta/floodplain environment…