Combined petrographic and geochemical data of the siliciclastic sedimentary rocks from the Shemshak Group in the northeastern Alborz Mountains, north of Iran are described, together with their implications for palaeoweathering, their provenance, and tectonic setting. Based on field observations and modal composition, the sandstones are classified as litharenites. The chemical index of alteration ... [Show full abstract] (CIA) indicated that the source terrains underwent a moderate intensity of chemical weathering. The index of chemical variation (ICV) values indicated that the Shemshak Group rocks were immature and related to a source area with an active tectonic regime. Major, trace and rare earth element (REE) data suggested the domination of mixed sedimentary (recycled) and igneous rocks in the source area of the Shemshak Group. Petrographic and geochemical characteristics of Shemshak Group rocks suggest an active continental margin (ACM), which corresponds to the collision of the Iran plate with the Turan plate.