USGS Visual Identifier

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Geologic Unit: Lava Creek

Publication:
Christiansen, R.L., and Blank, H.R., Jr., 1972, Volcanic 
   stratigraphy of the Quaternary rhyolite plateau in Yellowstone 
   National Park, IN Geology of Yellowstone National Park: U.S. 
   Geological Survey Professional Paper, 729-B, p. B1-B18. 
   [Available online from the USGS PubsWarehouse:  http://
   pubs.er.usgs.gov/pubs/pp/pp729B]
Usage in Publication:
Lava Creek Tuff*

Modifications: Geologic Province: Dominant Lithology:
 Named
 Isotopic dating
 Yellowstone province
 Tuff

Summary:
Named as upper ash-flow sheet of Yellowstone Group (raised in stratigraphic rank from formation) for Lava Creek, which enters the Gardner River about 3 km southeast of Mammoth, Yellowstone National Park, WY in Yellowstone province. Type area designated in upper canyon of Lava Creek and its tributary, Arrow Canyon. Is 210 m thick at type. Is more than 300 m thick in several areas. Occurs in Yellowstone Park, south to Jackson Lake, west to Island Park area and southern Centennial Mountains, and west along margin of Snake River Plain, ID. Divisible into two informal members. Principal reference section of lower member is south-facing cliff of Purple Mountain above an old gravel pit about 1 km east of Madison Junction where member has a basal 300 m thick, less densely welded, and an upper 180 m thick, densely welded tuff. Principal reference section for upper member is east wall, Sheepeater Canyon, Gardner River, 1 km northeast of Osprey Falls where member is 140 m thick, consisting of air-fall pumice, ash, phenocryst-rich glassy welded tuff, nonwelded and gray tuff, and black vitrophyre. Yellowstone caldera formed by collapse of magma-chamber roof that resulted from eruption of Lava Creek. Sanidine dated by K-Ar as 600,000 years old. Is part of the third volcanic cycle (of three) of Quaternary Yellowstone Plateau.
Source: GNU records (USGS DDS-6; Denver GNULEX).


Publication:
Naeser, C.W., Izett, G.A., and Wilcox, R.E., 1973, Zircon 
   fission-track ages of Pearlette family ash beds in Meade 
   County, Kansas: Geological Society of America, Geology, v. 
   1, no. 2, p. 93-95.
Usage in Publication:
Lava Creek Tuff*

Modifications: Geologic Province: Dominant Lithology:
 Overview
 Yellowstone province
 

Summary:
Pearlette was formerly thought to represent one ash-fall over a wide area. Recent petrographic and chemical studies of ash samples called Pearlette have shown that there are at least three different ash beds on the Great Plains and Rocky Mountain area of closely related petrographic and properties that are related to the Yellowstone Tuff. Pearlette type O identified at Onion Creek, SE1/4 NE1/4 sec 26, T24S, R24E, Grand Co, UT, Paradox basin, has 0.7 +/-0.2 m.y. and at three localities in Meade Co, KS, Anadarko basin, has 0.6 +/-0.07 to 0.9 +/-0.25 m.y. age. Type O correlates with Lava Creek Tuff of Yellowstone area WY. Pearlette type S is correlated with the Mesa Falls Tuff of Yellowstone area of 1.2 m.y. age. Zircons from type S not dated because of small size and paucity. Pearlette type B identified at Cudahy ash Mine, Meade Co, KS in the Anadarko basin has an age of 2.0 m.y. and is correlated with Huckleberry Ridge Tuff of Yellowstone National Park, WY in the Yellowstone province.
Source: GNU records (USGS DDS-6; Denver GNULEX).


Publication:
Izett, G.A., and Wilcox, R.E., 1982, Map showing localities and 
   inferred distributions of the Huckleberry Ridge, Mesa Falls, 
   and Lava Creek ash beds (Pearlette family ash beds) of 
   Pleistocene age in the western United States and southern 
   Canada: U.S. Geological Survey Miscellaneous Investigations 
   Series Map, I-1325, 1 sheet, scale 1:4,000,000
Usage in Publication:
Lava Creek ash*

Modifications: Geologic Province: Dominant Lithology:
 Areal limits
   

Summary:
Lava Creek A and Lava Creek B ash beds are informal parts of, and the downwind equivalent of, the 0.62-m.y.-old Lava Creek Tuff of Yellowstone National Park, WY. Lava Creek A ash distinguished from Lava Creek B ash by presence of more hornblende and allanite, and has a pumiceous shard habit and lack of clinopyroxene?. Lava Creek A occurs in Bighorn Co, WY in Bighorn basin. Lava Creek B occurs in Bighorn, Greater Green River and Denver basins, Yellowstone province, WY; Powder River and Williston basins, MT; Chadron arch and Salina basins, NE; Great Basin province, NV; Palo Duro, Permian, Pedregosa, Estancia, and Orogrande basins, Sierra Grande uplift, and Basin-and-Range province, NM; Anadarko basin, OK; Sioux uplift and Chadron arch, SD; Gulf Coast, Permian, and Palo Duro basins and Amarillo arch, TX; Denver, Eagle, Las Vegas-Raton, Piceance, San Juan, and Greater Green River basins, and San Juan Mountain province, CO; Snake River basin, Wasatch uplift, and Great Basin province, ID; Great Basin province, Wasatch uplift, Plateau sedimentary province, and Paradox basin, UT; Iowa shelf, IA; Anadarko, Salina, and Sedgwick basins, and Central Kansas uplift, KS; and CA. Inferred areal extent map.
Source: GNU records (USGS DDS-6; Denver GNULEX).


Publication:
Dethier, D.P., Halverson, Nils, Marrack, Lisa, Meagher, Mark, 
   Oelkers, E.H., Harrington, C.D., Sarna-Wojcicki, A.M., and 
   Meyer, C.E., 1990, Occurrence of Lava Creek B tephra layer 
   in the northwestern Espanola basin, New Mexico: New Mexico 
   Geology, v. 12, no. 4, p. 77-82.
Usage in Publication:
Lava Creek B tephra layer

Modifications: Geologic Province: Dominant Lithology:
 Areal limits
 San Juan basin
 

Summary:
A tephra layer about 80 cm thick is exposed in fluvial deposits of the ancestral Rio Chama in the Espanola basin [a subbasin of the San Juan basin] in north-central NM. The tephra is a gray-white vitric ash of bubble walls and bubble-wall junction shards as much as 350 mm in diameter. This tephra came from an eruption 620,000 yrs ago at Yellowstone, WY. Contaminants in the ash suggest reworking and redeposition within a 10-30 m thick piedmont alluvium in arroyos draining the Jemez Mountains. Measured section. Cross section. Ash is identified along a 25 km stretch of the Rio Chama about 100 m above the river.
Source: GNU records (USGS DDS-6; Denver GNULEX).