East Lake lies within the Jones Valley, a relatively level terrain to the north of Red Mountain. The park rests above a series of rocks known as the Conasauga Formation, a set of rock layers that include limestone, dolostone, and shale. These rocks formed 501–513 million years ago, in the mid-Cambrian Period of earth’s history. At this time, most of Alabama was submerged in the tropical waters of the southern hemisphere. You can read more about the origins of the Conasauga Formation in the geology summary for the McWane Science Center on Trek Birmingham. None of these ancient rocks are visible at the surface in East Lake Park.
-R. Scot Duncan