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7 December 2022
The coastal section at Esterillos Oeste, Costa Rica
Callan documents a geological stroll along the coast of Esterillos Oeste, in central southern Costa Rica, investigating the sequence of sediment in the Punta Judas Formation (Mid-Miocene) exposed there. Fossils, sedimentary structure, diagenetic features, structural deformation, and modern weathering all make prominent appearances.
11 July 2019
A submarine slump complex at Sandy Cove, Newfoundland
Traveling in Newfoundland, Callan visits a seaside outcrop showing a Proterozoic submarine slump complex, overprinted by tectonic cleavage and weathered by the sea.
5 June 2017
3D models of sedimentary structures
I’ve been busy making 3D models lately. Here are three ones united by a theme of being sand that was deposited relative to mud. In one case we have scouring to make flutes, in another case we have have localized sagging to make “ball & pillow” structures, and in the third case we have an extraordinary submarine landslide deposit. For two of them, the shale has been preferentially etched away, …
27 February 2017
Bedding / cleavage intersections at Indian Spring, Fort Valley
A new outcrop in Fort Valley shows Devonian fossil-rich mudrocks overprinted by a tectonic cleavage imparted during Pangaea’s birth throes.
25 February 2017
Concretions in the Millboro Formation, Fort Valley
Some enormous concretions are encountered in a shale quarry in the central Fort Valley. Concretions like these are typical of the Devonian-aged Millboro Formation.
28 June 2016
“Dunbar marble” at Barns Ness, Scotland
Thanks to the website ScottishGeology.com, run by Angus Miller, I learned of Barns Ness, a Mississippian-aged limestone fossil site on the shore not far from where we are staying at Dunbar. We ventured out there on Saturday afternoon, in search of fossils. The presence of the Dunbar Cemenet Works nearby is an indication that this is the most extensive limestone outcrop in central Scotland. I set my field assistant loose …
23 June 2016
Mega-trace fossils in the floor of the Old Bushmills Distillery, Northern Ireland
We arrived at Old Bushmills at 4:06pm, and the last tour of the distillery for the day had left at 4:00. But all was not lost – We were delighted to see that the visitor center area was paved in slabs of shale with tremendously large, well-preserved trace fossils – sinuous burrows parallel to the bedding plane, in some cases cross-cutting or looping back over themselves! Great stuff – balm …
15 March 2016
Join Callan for a virtual field trip, as he shares dozens of photos from a recent ‘field review’ of a new geological map in Virginia’s Valley & Ridge province. Highlights: graptolites, trace fossils, geopetal structures, folds and faults.
12 October 2015
Bedding/cleavage GigaPans at Harpers Ferry, WV
I’ve been thinking lately about Harpers Ferry, the spot where West Virginia, Virginia, and Maryland meet, at the confluence of the Potomac River and the Shenandoah River. I’ve noted small outcrops of its overturned beddding here previously, and also described a book I read about the man who made the place infamous: John Brown. I went out there again last week with my NOVA colleague Beth Doyle, and we explored …
28 July 2015
Millboro Formation shale in outcrop and in hand sample
Another site from the GMU sedimentology field trip in April: An outcrop on Route 33 in Brandywine, West Virginia, showing the Millboro Formation. It’s mostly shale, with some intriguing sandstones, too. There are fossils and diagenetic carbonate nodules (concretions). Here’s the outcrop, the largest GigaPan I’ve taken so far (7.9 billion pixels): link The shale itself looks… like shale. It’s fine-grained, and dark (high carbon content, suggesting low oxygen levels …