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30 July 2022
Fresh from the field, Callan shares a quintet of beautifully preserved desiccation cracks in Mesoproterozoic Belt Supergroups sediments, exposed in Montana’s geological gem, Glacier National Park.
18 September 2020
Working up some new images for my free, online Historical Geology textbook, I annotated a photograph I took in March of this alluvial fan in southern Death Valley. The development of desert varnish on older parts of the fan shows their age visually in a quick and easy way of determining fan deposit sequence: I’ve been making a lot of these animated annotations as a way of conserving space in …
31 July 2020
I spied an anticline last weekend while engaging in a day of solo geologizing along Skyline Drive in Shenandoah National Park. At Two Mile Run Overlook, I gazed west toward the southern tip of Massanutten Mountain, and noted what appeared to be an anticline in the Blue Ridge foothills: Annotated: And here it is in Google Maps, with the perspective rotated to looking ~along strike to the north, and I …
22 May 2020
Some web research led to a serendipitous discovery and further exploration. Wherever you’re sheltering in place, you don’t have a view that’s this grand. Slip away for a few moments to the high country of Montana’s Glacier National Park, where an anticline may be seen in the towering cliffs…
27 March 2020
What day is it again? Hard to keep track in the days of raging coronavirus infections, but it is in fact Friday, which means that if you want a dose of the halcyon pre-COVID-19 days, you can enjoy this example of a false fold from Death Valley National Park’s Titus Canyon.
20 March 2020
We are living in surreal times. It hardly seems possible, but a week ago this evening, I drove down the Las Vegas strip with my students, ogling at the glitz and spectacle and crowds. Now, a mere 7 days later, Vegas has been shuttered, and it’s been shuttered for days. We traveled freely through California and now a week later, everyone in the state is ordered to stay home. What …
22 November 2019
Because I’m putting together a field course for spring break 2020 to Death Valley California, I was looking through old Death Valley photos this week, from the last time I went to that special place. It was seven years ago! How time flies… This one is in Mosaic Canyon, and was taken by my student Marcelo Arispe, a talented photographer as well as a talented geologist: By the standards of …
27 July 2019
Yesterday, I featured some folds from Broom Point, but there are also faults there. With the intriguing local limestone conglomerates providing easily-discernible marker beds, these apparently vertical faults are easy to spot. Here are three examples:
26 July 2019
Here’s a look at some of the outcrops at Broom Point, within sight of the famous uplifted fjord called Western Brook Pond: The limestone beds here are Ordovician in age, and they dip to the east: In places through there are folds to be spotted in the beds:
12 July 2019
Here is an outcrop of folded limestone along route 430 in Newfoundland, inside Gros Morne National Park, just west of the crossroads called Wiltondale: A detailed look at the left antiformal portion of the outcrop: A zoomed-in examination of the rightmost part, where a goopy looking synform resides: Just down the way, a second outcrop shows another fold with the same sense of asymmetry, on a smaller scale: Happy Friday …
3 May 2019
When a dike is subjected to shear, how does it deform? A guest Friday fold from Darrel Cowan of the University of Washington teaches a nice little lesson. Join the field trip in Monarch Canyon of Death Valley National Park…
14 December 2018
A guest Friday fold brings us to a position in the sky somewhere over eastern Death Valley National Park. Join us in contemplating the Titus Canyon Anticline.
26 October 2018
It’s been a very Billy-Goaty week for me. Three times since Sunday afternoon, I’ve taken people to the Billy Goat Trail’s “A” loop in C&O Canal National Historical Park. On Tuesday and Thursday, it was my NOVA Physical Geology students. On Sunday, though, it was just my son and me. Good news! He helped me discover a new fold by exploring some new rock outcrops and climbing on them. He …
3 November 2017
This Friday, let’s return to Glacier National Park. Here are some folds in Helena Formation limestone: Can’t see them? Fair enough – the point of maximum inflection appears to be hidden behind a snow-filled gully: But in addition to that big fold, there are several kink bands in there, too. Let’s zoom in: Here they are: Zooming in further, on the right-most of these kink bands: …And here, with the …
20 October 2017
Over the summer, I treated you to a great big kink fold in the sedimentary rocks of Glacier National Park. Here’s another set: Did you see both of them in that first picture? – one bigger down below, one smaller up above. Both kink bands dip to the left. Let’s zoom in on the upper one: There’s more where this came from – stay tuned for more…. and in the …
9 August 2017
A showcase of five new 3D digital models of awesome rock samples and outcrops, produced using Agisoft Photoscan.
28 July 2017
It’s Friday! How about we celebrate with a beautiful kink fold from a gorgeous national park?
5 May 2017
It’s Friday, the end of the workweek, but also the beginning of the celebration of folded rocks. Examine a particularly sinuous example from the buckled Cambrian limestones of Canada’s Kootenay National Park.
15 April 2017
My son and I hiked Compton Peak in Shenandoah National Park this morning, and saw these two lovely examples of xenoliths. The example above is small, but it shows clearly the difference between the coarse, felsic basement rock (Mesoproterozoic granitoid, comprising the xenolith) and the surrounding fine-grained dark green metabasalt of the Catoctin Formation (Neoproterozoic). Here’s another, bigger example: These two Blue Ridge examples both illustrate the principle of relative …
29 October 2016
In Shenandoah National Park, astride Virginia’s Blue Ridge, feeder dikes of Catoctin Formation (meta-)basalt cut across the Grenvillian-aged granitoid basement. Due to their mafic composition and columnar jointing, these feeder dikes generally weather more rapidly than their host rocks. I led a field trip in the park on Thursday for my son’s school, and my student Marissa was there the weekend prior, checking out the autumn leaves and geology with …