Master of Science in Geology
First Committee Member
Andrew Hanson, Chair
Second Committee Member
Third Committee Member
Graduate Faculty Representative
Number of Pages
The Muddy Creek Formation (MCF) may represent an ancestral Colorado River deposit. To test this hypothesis, I mapped exposures of the MCF within the Virgin River Depression (VRD), a rift basin in the central Basin and Range. This is the first study to analyze fluvial MCF facies and test their viability as ancestral Colorado River deposits.
Mapping, paleocurrent analysis, conglomerate provenance, and architectural elements analysis were used in order to characterize the fluvial MCF near Overton NV. Architectural elements analysis revealed that MCF fluvial facies are most closely associated with those of a high-energy sand-bed braided river system. These results do not resemble definitive Colorado River deposits. In light of these findings, fluvial facies of the MCF may be attributed to a Miocene Virgin River and permit a revised depositional model for the MCF within the VRD. Additionally, these findings inform models of dryland fluvial systems in rift basins.
Basin and range; Braided river; Earth sciences; Great Basin; Miocene Geologic Period; Rift basin; Rifts (Geology); Muddy creek formation; United States – Virgin River; Virgin River depression
Earth Sciences | Geology | Geomorphology | Sedimentology
Swenberg, Carl Taylor, "The Fluvial Muddy Creek Formation Near Overton, Nevada" (2012). UNLV Theses, Dissertations, Professional Papers, and Capstones. 1524.