Paleoclimate and Depositional Environment of the Blackwater Draw Formation Ransom Canyo1

Paleoclimate and Depositional Environment of the Blackwater Draw Formation Ransom Canyo1

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Unformatted text preview: F igur e 1 Topogr aphic map of r oad cut Univer sity of Texas Libr ar y ud clasts embedded in pinkish sandy conglomer ate F igur e 3 Guaje ash Paleoclimate and Depositional Environment of the Blackwater Draw Formation Ransom Canyon, Texas Department of Geology, Texas Tech University, Lubbock, Texas ABSTRACT Yellow House Canyon, located on the eastern edge of the South Plains along the Brazos River, has an exposure along the canyon escarpment of the Blackwater Draw Formation. The Blackwater Draw formation is regionally an eolian sand deposit that covers over 120,000 km 2 . The formation contains 1.4 ma Guaje Ash bed (Holliday 1996). The Guaje Ash is related to the eruption of the Valles Caldera and is a great indicator for age of the formation. An examination of the Blackwater Draw Formation shows that (1) There are two different climates represented in the Blackwater Draw Formation in Yellow House Canyon and (2) the change in climate effected the depositional environment. INTRODUCTION Yellow House Canyon, located in Lubbock County, Texas is a locality of the Pleistocene Blackwater Draw Formation. The Blackwater Draw Formation is the predominant deposit of the South Plains, covering roughly 120,000 km 2 (Holliday 1988). Due to the presence of the Guaje Ash (Fig. 3), deposited by an eruption of the Valles Caldera in New Mexico, the Blackwater Draw Formation has been dated as Pleistocene deposits (Holliday 1988). The Blackwater Draw Formation was originally called cover sands until Reeves (1979) introduced the name Blackwater Draw Formation (Holliday 1988). Very little scientific research has been published concerning this formation (Holliday 1988). This formation is exposed along the escarpment of Yellow House Canyon. The Yellow House Canyon is a drainage cut into the South Plains by the Brazos River and consists of four soils. This study was undertaken in an effort to determine the evolution of the Paleoclimate and depositional environment of those four main soils. METHODS Field data and samples were collected from two road cuts 40 m apart along FM 400. A sample of each soil was collected and logged. Collection of soil was accomplished by digging into the sides of the road cut and placing the soils into sorted bags. Soils were examined in the field and in the laboratory. In the laboratory, each soil was assigned a color based off of the Munsell Soil Color Charts. Soils from the lower road cut were sieved and weighed so that statistical data could be collected (Table 1&2). Evaluation of roundness, sphericity, and compositions of each soil and its constituents were achieved using a hand lens.compositions of each soil and its constituents were achieved using a hand lens....
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Paleoclimate and Depositional Environment of the Blackwater Draw Formation Ransom Canyo1

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